Open Innovation Model × 1. Brunel Co-Innovate Journeys engage with SMEs through a series of network engagement activities and events in partnership with stakeholders and partners to inform and generate a pipeline of SMEs to connect into the Co-Innovate ecosystem. We identify marketing communications, stakeholder group engagement, special interest networking and professional development events as four interconnected elements of our promotion and network engagement activities. × 2. Specialist Innovation Directors based in the University will undertake initial diagnostics to review and identify the barriers to innovation within participating SMEs. The objective is to identify those SMEs which have the capacity and an “innovation friendly” environment to collaborate with Brunel to deliver innovation support which has the potential for real economic impact. × 3. The Innovation Director/s working with small groups of postgraduate students and selected Brunel academics will provide extended R&I audits of SMEs where needed, to identify innovation challenges and potential. Involving postgraduate students from a range of subject areas within Brunel such as Design, Engineering, Business and Computer Science providing an additional resource and perspective leading to further collaborative projects with the students if required. × 4. Brunel’s own innovation voucher scheme to support seed funding for research and innovation activities with potential for larger R&I opportunities and collaborations. Distinct from other regional or national innovation voucher schemes, the Brunel Innovation Vouchers, piloted in the Co-Innovate (2012-15) programme, have the dual goal of supporting an SME with an appropriate seed fund to explore the potential of an R&I activity, combined with a mechanism to incentivise individual Brunel research staff to actively engage with the SME. × 5. Brunel has considerable capacity and varying formats for collaborative working in support of identified SME R&I opportunities. With the ongoing support of the Innovation Director/s and Co-Innovate Champions; projects will be defined and matchmaking with researchers, research teams, undergraduate or postgraduate students will take place. This will be followed by implementation of projects over timescales varying from one week to one year. × 6. SMEs typically have little or no experience of accessing the wider range of R&I related funding available to them; especially the broader opportunities of collaborative funding bids. This component of the ecosystem links the mentoring support with Brunel research teams and the Brunel Research and Development Office (RSDO). This combined team will then to go through the necessary steps for funding applications; including Knowledge Transfer Partnerships (KTPs), other Innovate UK schemes, UK research council opportunities and EU Horizon 2020. Additionally, SMEs linking with the opportunities provided by the Making the Future project will also have a route to this scheme’s funding panel. × 7. Similarly to KTP Associates, Co-Innovate Innovation Associates are placement students, graduates and recent alumni, who, in collaboration with SMEs continue to be supported by Brunel through access to staff and facilities within the University. The Innovation Associates are not directly funded by the University. Therefore they may be employed by the SME, permanently, or on a fixed term or project basis. The direct link with Brunel provides an additional conduit for collaborating SMEs to engage with the staffing and resources at Brunel that may be required for their own R&I activity. The embedded Innovation Associates provide an additional practical means for the ongoing sustainability and knowledge exchange of the ecosystem. × 8. Making the Future is a HEFCE and Brunel initiative in collaboration with new Central Research Laboratory (CRL) developed with U+I. This is a distinctive part of the innovation ecosystem which will provide access and support for SMEs, Innovation Associates and entrepreneurial companies to work alongside a dynamic group of companies within the extensive facilities for innovation and prototyping at the incubator and maker space. The cluster of entrepreneurial people and organisations within the Central Research Laboratory provide an additional resource and opportunity to enable collaborating SMEs to prototype new products, services and systems, bringing additional efficiencies to the R&I pipeline in terms of time to market, risk and financial management.