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Innovation Programmes

Queen’s University of Belfast is renowned for its innovation strengths and has been ranked as the UK's #1 university for commercialising research for two consecutive years (2019 & 2020). Innovation programmes play an increasingly important role in accelerating the translation of research into commercial and societal impact. 

Queen’s successfully delivers high-impact programmes across the island of Ireland, UK and Europe, for many of the key innovational agencies in those territories. From university focused research-to-commercialisation programmes, challenge-led programmes for specific sectors or scale-up innovation programmes for existing SMEs, Queen's, along with a vast network of partners, industry experts and mentors, Queen's is helping to build a innovation eco-system that is designed to tackle the urgent global, national and local economic & societal challenges we face.  


Our vision at Innovation Programmes to help our researchers make an impact outside of the lab by bridging the gap between university research and the market. Our market discovery programmes are designed to support researchers refine and validate the commercial potential of their business idea, assess their product-market fit and receive feedback on their business readiness. We are passionate about building the foundations of sustainable businesses that will make a long-lasting impact on society.


Innovation Programmes Team

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Innovation Programmes

Programmes which are now open to APPLY!


This 12-week BIOSCIENCE pre-accelerator programme is designed to providing the skills, networks and financial support to enable innovators, researchers and technicians to test and validate their idea. Your ICURe journey will culminate with the opportunity to reflect on your market discovery findings. Also, to help accelerate your research impact, an experienced panel of funders and stakeholders to guide you through your next step

ICURe Explore

This 12-week pre-accelerator programme is designed to support researchers through testing key market assumptions and market exploration activities, with the result of taking their breakthrough innovations out of the lab and transforming them into successful spin-outs! Participants will gain access to our team of experts and proactive connections to our network of entrepreneurs, investors and funders.

EIT Food Seedbed 2023

EIT food is the world’s largest and most dynamic food innovation community. EIT Food is supported by the European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT), a body of the European Union. Plug into our EIT Food entrepreneurship powerhouse to maximise your chances to become a game changer. Launch, accelerate or scale your agrifood tech venture. We support you every step of the way with our three hands-on, equity free programmes.

Case Studies

Working closely with the Commercial Development and QUBIS Teams, the Innovation Programmes Team have offered multiple initiatives that have resulted in licensed opportunities, stimulated start-ups and scaled Innovation Driven Enterprises (IDEs). Take a look at some examples.

Bia Analytical Ltd

28 February, 2023

They have developed industry-leading, cutting-edge methods to detect substitution or food adulteration across the supply chain, focusing on developing methods to detect adulteration in high-value or volume commodities such as herbs, spices, rice

GenoMe Diagnostics

3 March, 2023

GenoME Diagnostics is a spin-out company from the Patrick G Johnston Centre for Cancer Research at Queen’s University Belfast. It focuses on the development of novel tests for early detection of diseases, using an affordable and scalable platform.


28 February, 2023

Building on research at Queen’s University Belfast, VascVersa is developing a cell therapy product, Angicyte, which will address the underlying cause of the condition by promoting the formation of new blood vessels.

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Challenge-driven innovation Programmes