Business Application Process

There are various opportunities for enterprises to benefit from, each with a different timescale and emphasis. We’d love to hear about your business ideas. First, let us know more about you and your needs by completing and returning the Initial Contact Form and the Project Outline form.  The more you can explain about your needs at this point, the easier it is for us to create the right support for you. If your interest is in networking and workshops rather than an R&D project then you only need to complete the Initial Contact Form. Our business development team will then be in touch to discuss the best ways forward and how we might support you through our projects and partnerships. Download the Initial Contact Form and Outline Project Forms complete and mail them to

Support through ERDF funding is a competitive process and will involve the following steps:

Step One
Complete our forms above and our business development team will contact you to discuss your business and project ideas. We will need to ensure you are eligible to proceed and that your ideas are suitable to our opportunities.

Step Two
We will match your project idea(s) to the most appropriate means of support and academic expertise where necessary. This may be at Lancaster University or with one of our partner institutions.Steps 3– 4 for projects of 12 months or longer only)

Step Three
The research team, consisting of the business and identified university staff with expertise in the area of relevance to you, meet to discuss potential research avenues and mutual areas of interest.

Step Four
Upon agreement, the research team submit a full more detailed project application, identifying key deliverables and both commercial and environmental benefits. Applications are scored to ensure the most appropriate projects are taken forward.

Step Five
If successful, the project is advertised to recruit a Graduate Researcher who will deliver the research. Recruitment is managed by the Centre team but does involve both academic and business partners to ensure the correct candidate is secured and appointed to deliver your project.

Step Six
Upon the recruitment and allocation of a graduate researcher, the research begins. Commencement may depend on research availability and/or university intake timelines.

Application Process Prospective Graduate Researchers are asked to apply directly to adverts which suit their skill sets and experience. If you are applying to more than one project then you must follow the application process below each time, with separate application documents.
The stages of application are:

Apply to an advert following the instructions below.


If you are shortlisted a member of the team will invite you to interview.


You will be interviewed by a panel made up of both academic and business partners.


A member of the interview panel will be in touch with the outcome of your interview.


If successful, you will be asked to apply through a formal university procedure which will enrol you onto your chosen Masters or PhD.


The team will keep in touch during this process and a welcome session will be arranged for when you begin.

For any enquiries about adverts or the application process, please contact
How to Apply
Please see individual adverts  for details on awarding university, business partner and research aims. Please note that adverts may have different deadlines.
To apply, download the application documents here . Please send all completed documents to by the deadline stated on the advert, clearly stating the reference number of the advert you are applying to. All documents, plus a minimum of 2 references are required by the deadline for your application to be considered.

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