A new £5m fund to help deliver better services and generate savings in the Welsh public and third sectors has been launched.
The Innovate to Save fund is a unique partnership between the Welsh Government and Y Lab – which itself is a partnership between Cardiff University and the innovation charity Nesta – and will work closely with the Wales Council for Voluntary Action.
The new fund will provide repayable and non-repayable funding and non-financial support to Welsh public services and the third sector. Non-repayable funding will support organisations to prototype, test and develop complex and innovative changes to the way services are delivered.
All areas of the Welsh public and third sectors will be able to apply for Innovate to Save funding. Organisations submitting proposals will also be able to draw on the resources and experience of Nesta and Cardiff University to expand the scope of projects.
The new fund will operate alongside the successful Invest to Save fund, which has been operating since 2009 and has supported 160 projects. In addition to the £5m Innovate to Save fund, £15m will be available through Invest to Save in 2017-18.
Helen Goulden, executive director, Innovation Lab, Nesta, said: “Motivation for governments to rethink and re-shape the way that they engage citizens or deliver services is currently riding high, with examples of governments from across the world choosing to finance public sector innovation.
“Our partnership with the Welsh Government is ambitious, seeking to tackle some of the most complex issues currently facing our public services – and generate cashable savings. The Innovate to Save model is new, blending different kinds of finance and intensive support to achieve this goal.
“Over the next two years it will, I hope, provide the evidence to justify it’s replication in many other areas.”
For more information about the new Innovate to Save Fund and how to apply, visit http://www.nesta.org.uk/project/innovate-save
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