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UZH Innovation Hub

How to apply

UZH Innovation Grants

The information on this page is meant to guide applicants for the UZH Innovation Grants in the preparation of their application.

The three elements of your application

To apply for the Innovaiton Grants you need to submit a 3 min pitch video, your current CV and describe your project directly in the application form on the grants platform.

Doctoral students also need to submit a support letter from their host professor (use this link Mentor Support Letter Grants (DOCX, 44 KB) to get the template).


Eligibility criteria

The following 4 eligibility criteria apply

  • The applicant is a doctoral student, researcher or staff at UZH;
  • The proposed project is based on research results developed at the University of Zurich;
  • The proposed project clearly fits the purpose of the UZH Innovation Grants;
  • The project can start within 3 months after the funding decision (e.g. if the applicant forsees to onboard new team members, then a plan for this is in place).

Selection criteria

The UZH Innovation Grants are awarded based on the following 3 selection criteria

  • Problem: The proposed solution addresses a relevant problem (a solution for this problem could generate substantial market and/or societal value)
  • Idea: The proposed idea is innovative and has potential to solve the addressed problem
  • Intention: The applicant will use the Innovation Grant to explore the market potential of the proposed idea and has planned the necessary resources (time, knowhow and skills).

Selection process

The projects are selected in a 2-stage process.

Step 1: The UZH Innovation Office selects applicants based on the 4 eligibility criteria.

Step 2: Selected UZH researchers from different fields rate the submitted pitch videos based on the 3 selection criteria.

The applicants will receive the funding decision within one month after the application deadline.

Getting ready to apply

Step I: Create a profile on the grant platform

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

Stage II: Prepare your video submission

Prepare to present your project in 3 minutes. Note that the video need to explain your proposed project in a stand-alone manner. Your video message should address the following points:

  • Problem: What problem are you tackling with your solution? Who has this problem and why is it relevant?

    •    Idea: Explain your idea and why it is innovative.

  • Intention: Explain your intention with the Innovation Grant and what resources you have at hand to achieve this (time, team, contact with relevant stakeholders etc.).

Record your video using the technology of your choice (smartphone, video meeting software or similar). Note that it must be the applicant talking in the video. It is usually helpful to include a few slides/images to explain the problem and your idea.

Step III: Answer the questions in the application form

In brief words, how does the Innovation Grant help you to move your innovative idea one step closer towards implementation? Answer a number of questions related to your proposed project in the application form on the platform.

Stage IV: Choose your thematic area

In the application form you need to choose the thematic area that best fits your project. You can choose between i) Bio&MedTech, ii) Digital Innovation, iii) Sustainable Society and iv) Other. Your choice hints us which expert is best suited to evaluate your project. Depending on the thematic area you choose for your project,  different support programs are available.

Stage V: Mentor support letter (for doctoral students only)

Doctoral students applying for the Innovation Grant need to submit a support letter from their professor, confirming that he/she support this work and that the student will have the necessary time to work on the project.

If you have questions about the mentor letter, get in touch with the UZH Innovation Office:

Stage VI: Submit your application

Finalize your application and upload your video on the grants platform.

Information on the use of funds

UZH Innovation grants recipients receive CHF 10’000 in funding. It can be used to pay salaries (e.g. co-worker for project), materials (e.g. for a prototype, platforms), travel (e.g. to meet with important stakeholders) or for outsourcing (e.g. set up a website).

The funds cannot be used to purchase personal computers or related equipment.

Submit your application

Submit your application on the grants platform

The upcoming call will close on March 1st 23:59 CET

The funding decision for your application will be shared with you by the end of March.