Inclusive Economy Partnership

Bringing together business, civil society and government to help address major societal challenges facing those on low to middle incomes.

We can connect you with leading businesses and civil society organisations to scale your activities, build your network and award you up to £20k to develop plans to achieve these goals.

The Opportunity

By encouraging collaboration and partnerships between business, civil society and government, there is an opportunity to join up and scale the wide range of existing good work being done on critical social and economic issues.

The Partnership will identify, engage with and support the scaling of existing, high potential solutions that focus on tackling the challenges of Financial Inclusion and Capability, Mental Health and Transition to Work, particularly for low to middle income households.

Solutions can be, but are not limited to: products, services, programmes, principles, standards of practice and can be delivered by charities, social enterprises, commercial enterprises, voluntary organisations, community groups, and other incorporated entities or unincorporated associations with formal membership structures.

The Challenges

We are focused on Financial Inclusion and Capability, Mental Health and Transition to Work given the impact these challenges have on low to middle income households across the UK.

Financial Inclusion and Capability: 10 million working people who are either financially struggling or squeezed lack access to affordable and high quality financial products and services

Mental Health: Mental health problems are one of the largest public health challenges facing the UK with 1 in 4 people suffering from a mental health problem annually

Transition to Work: Young people in the UK are over 2.5 times less likely to be employed than the average for the working age population


The following challenge areas are ripe for innovative existing solutions:

Financial Inclusion and Capability: Providing the financially ‘underserved’ with the tools and capabilities to access and interact with fair financial products

  • Dealing with problematic or persistent debt
  • Providing access to affordable credit options
  • Creating a savings buffer as part of healthy day-to-day budgeting

Mental health: Enabling business to positively impact the Mental Health of their employees, customers, suppliers and wider communities

  • Supporting businesses to implement changes within their organisations to improve mental health of their employees
  • Developing mental health tools and training offerings that support employees and line managers
  • Improving the mental health of customers, communities, supply chains and SME networks

Transition to Work: Moving young people from education, unemployment or inactivity into jobs

  • Building engagement with the world of work through platforms linking together employers, schools, young job seekers, and their families
  • Supporting activities that help young people gain access to resilience, employability and basic skills and work experience
  • Supporting businesses in how they hire, structure jobs and engage individuals when they join an organisation and seek to progress

Our Offer

The Partnership offers applicants unique access to a collaborative partnership of leading business and civil society organisations, including their extensive networks, and to financial support for the development of scaling plans.

During a testing phase from January 2018 through March 2018, businesses and civil society partners will work closely with successful applicants on the development of scaling plans, contributing their:

  • Extensive corporate and civil society networks, helping to generate partnership opportunities
  • Access to potential customers or beneficiaries for the applicant’s offering, helping to enabling growth opportunities
  • Strategic, marketing, operational and other expertise, helping to enhance and future-proof scaling plans

Successful applicants that do not have sufficient resources to develop and refine their plans to scale will be granted up to £20,000. This grant will support the successful applicant’s creation and refinement of a scaling plan in collaboration with the Partnership’s business and civil society members.

Following the testing phase, the Partnership hopes to support successful applicants in executing scaling plans, as well as gaining access to partnership networks and sources of capital to scale.

Apply to the challenge

Our application asks for background information about your organisation and solution, what you do, how you deliver impact and your aspirations and plans for extending your impact in the future.

 

What we are looking for

We are seeking solutions from organisations with a demonstrated track record over the past 12 months as a minimum, and an ability to show how the solution generates or has plans to generate impact.

Solutions can be, but are not limited to: products, services, programmes, principles, standards of practice and can be delivered by charities, social enterprises, commercial enterprises, voluntary organisations, community groups, and other incorporated entities or unincorporated associations with formal membership structures.

We are unable to consider solutions that require government policy or regulatory changes in order to scale.

Apply now

How We Assess Your Application

We will review all applications by assessing the solutions that we believe have the highest potential to scale and have an impact on the challenge area.

We assess the potential to scale on the capacity of the solution:

  1. to have an impact within its focus areas;
  2. to realise its potential through the quality of its offering, the rigour of its business, operational and scaling plans and the team composition and commitment;
  3. to fit well with the Partnership initiative, where a solution could accelerate its impact through the support on offer

Nesta will screen and assess applications with support from the Cabinet Office, Department for Digital, Culture, Media & Sport and the leading businesses and civil society organisations that will comprise the initiative.

Key dates

Entries open

21 August 2017

Submission deadline

3 November 2017 at 1200 BST

Finalist Working Sessions with Partnership Members

Between 29 November and 4 December 2017

Grant Agreements for Finalists

December 2017-January 2018

Testing Workshops and Scaling Plan Development

January-March 2018

Who’s behind the partnership

HM Government

The Partnership is supported by the Cabinet Office and the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS).

Visit the Cabinet Office on gov.uk
Visit DCMS on gov.uk

Nesta

Nesta is a global innovation foundation that backs new ideas to tackle the big challenges of our time. Nesta uses its knowledge, networks, funding and skills – working in partnership with others, including governments, businesses and charities. It is a UK charity that works all over the world, supported by a financial endowment.

nesta.org.uk