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UZH Innovation Hub

How to apply

UZH Entrepreneur Fellowships, Digital Innovation

Please read the instructions and documents available on this page before you send us your application.

Here you can find a blank application form (for reference only). (PDF, 128 KB)

What are the prerequisites to apply?

  • You have a clear startup idea in the area of digitalization and digital transformation.
  • You have a strong motivation to develop a product or novel service and to transfer it to the market.
  • Your proposed solution is based on findings from UZH research.
  • You hold a Master or doctoral degree. Master and doctoral students who plan to complete their thesis within six months after the application deadline can also apply.
  • You submit the project as a single applicant.
  • A UZH researcher commits to support you as a mentor during the fellowship.
  • Readiness to fully dedicate your time to the funded project and for being employed at UZH for the duration of the fellowship.

How can the funding be used?

The Entrepreneur fellowship funds can be used to pay salaries, materials and other project-related expenses. The adequate salary level depends on the education level of the applicant and on other costs expected in the project. Entrepreneur fellows are to be employed as Scientific Assistants (Wissenschaftliche Mitarbeitende). Funding obtained or requested from other sources that is related to the project must be declared.

When can applications be submitted?

Researchers can apply for the UZH Entrepreneur fellowships, Digital Innovation once a year. The deadline for new applications is on April 15th, 23:59 (CET). The application window opens around one month ahead of the deadline.

Application call is open now! Register on the grants platform and submit your applicationhere.

How are the projects selected?

The projects are evaluated in a three stage selection process including the steps 1) eligibility check, 2) internal pre-selection and 3) interview with the jury.

UZH Entrepreneur Fellowships, Digital Innovation are awarded based on the following criteria:

  • High innovation potential (e.g. unique technology or approach, unique business model, existing or envisaged intellectual property protection)
  • Compelling market opportunity and business case
  • Feasibility (convincing project plan, resources, competences, team)
  • Personal potential of the applicant (motivation, entrepreneurial spirit)

Is a reapplication possible?

Rejected applications may be resubmitted. However, a project and/or applicant may not re-apply for the UZH Entrepreneur Fellowships more than twice. Furthermore, the jury expects to see a substantial progress of the project and/or business case in the reapplication.

Application checklist

Step I: Find your mentor

  • Once you have a project that you are all eager to proceed with, the next step is to find a mentor at UZH that commits to support you during your Entrepreneur fellowship. The mentor is a professor or senior researcher at UZH. If you have questions around choosing a mentor, please do not hesitate to contact us for advice. Mentor Letter of Support Template (DOCX, 55 KB)

Step II: Decide on your host institution for the Entrepreneur Fellowship

  • Ideally you are employed at the same institute as your mentor. However, this does not have to be the case. Your host institution will provide you with office space and support you to set up an account for your funding.

Stage III: Prepare to pitch your project

  • Prepare to present your project and your motivation in 3 minutes. Describe your idea, which problem you aim to solve, the market potential and your motivation to bring this solution to the market.

Stage IV: Record a 3 min video presentation

  • Record your video using the technology of your choice (smartphone, zoom etc.). The focus should be on how you tell your story, we want to see you and max 3 slides to support the argumentation.

Stage V: Create a profile on the submission platform

  • Create a profile on the submission platform and fill in your contact information. You can leave your application as a draft and submit your application later.

Stage VI: Submit your application

  • Upload your video and final application documents on the platform and submit. Project proposal (Form A1), Budget (Form A2), your CV and a letter of intent from your mentor.

Submit an application

Please register a profile on our online platform to submit an application:
Go to submission platform


General terms of the UZH Entrepreneur Fellowships