What's Different About #VocTech Specialist?


by Louise Rowland, Programme Director for Ufi Charitable Trust.

What’s different about the VocTech Specialist Call?
VocTech Specialist is a Challenge-Led call, so the objectives of the project need to address the challenges we (Ufi) are trying to address.
VocTech Seed and VocTech Impact are ‘open’ calls – this means we will accept applications which tackle all sorts of challenges and opportunities in vocational learning such as how assessment happens, improving apprenticeship retention, VR/AR authoring tools, or even using AI to help people develop their empathy skills.
The VocTech Specialist call is much more focused.
We are interested in ideas that directly tackle the issues resulting from the changing nature of work. We want to see projects responding to situations where employers and individuals need to think very differently about the skills that they need in order to survive in a changing landscape – and how those skills are to be acquired.
Applicants need to show how their idea will do one of the following:

  • Provide a route into work
  • Re-skill adults who are in work to ensure that the skills they have are relevant and meet clearly identified changing needs of a sector/industry.
  • Re-skill adults who are in work to enable them to transition into new sectors/industries.

The VocTech Specialist call is looking to fund ideas that are not fully developed.
VocTech Specialist will begin with a funded discovery phase which supports the development of the idea and whether there is an actual need for it – as opposed to early stage testing or the actual delivery of solutions.  We are looking for organisations who would genuinely need a discovery phase to explore their idea further, to engage with employers, learners and other stakeholders in order to decide what to do next.
What doesn’t change?
We are still looking for projects that are innovative, ambitious, and focused on providing high-quality digital solutions to the vocational market which have the potential to ‘scale-up’ and continue after Ufi funding has ended.

Discover more about the VocTech Specialist criteria and guidlines.

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