How the Fellowship Works


The LIF Program is a multi-phase program to be delivered over a 12-month period. It is a multi-sectoral partnership among the top institutions, in the UK and the Philippines, in the fields of science, innovation and leadership management.

The Fellowship is open to all academic researchers across the country who is in the process of developing a business proposition for their technology or innovation. While the most ideal candidate is one who has had experience in testing their idea in the market, candidates who are at the cusp of commercialization will benefit greatly. 

The Philippine Government's Department of Science and Technology (DOST) will invite applications from all scientists, academic researchers, and technology innovators across the country. One of DOST's planning councils, the Philippine Council for Agriculture, Aquatic, and Natural Resources Research and Development (PCAARRD), shall be the DOST's primary implementing and monitoring arm throughout the program. ​


A cohort of 10-15 researchers (Leaders in Innovation fellows) from the partner country will be selected based on the excellence of their research, the potential of their idea for commercialization, and their potential in taking the idea forward.

Qualified applicants shall undergo a competitive screening process that involves the submission and presentation of their idea/proposition to a panel of experts from the DOST, the Royal Academy of Engineering (RAEng), and the Asian Institute of Management (AIM).

A rigorous scoring mechanism shall be used inclusive of criteria, such as:

  • ​Excellence, novelty and/or effectiveness of the proposed innovation;
  • Feasibility and market potential of the proposed innovation;
  • Estimate distance to market of the proposed innovation (investment readiness);
  • Track record of the candidate (including technical and non-technical capabilities);
  • Entrepreneurial potential and commercial awareness of the applicant;
  • Expected benefit(s) of the innovation to the Philippine's economy

From a shortlist of candidates, the top 10-15 applications shall be selected as Fellows of the program.



The selected fellows will be invited to attend a two-week residential program in the UK, arranged and supported by RAEng. To prepare the fellows for their coursework in the UK, the fellows will undergo a 3-day preparatory course designed to help the fellows orient their commercialization effort and enhance their entrepreneurial skill set. It will cover topics such as:

  • Elements of business
  • Market segmentation and positioning
  • Operational Feasibility
  • Financial Viability


The Royal Academy of Engineering is seeking applications from researchers, with strong entrepreneurial potential, to take part in their Leaders in Innovation Fellowships programme. This is a residential training programme in innovation and technology entrepreneurship that will take place, in the UK.

Working with a select number of partner countries, the objectives of The Royal Academy of Engineering’s Leaders in Innovation Fellowships (LIF) programme are:

- to build the capacity of researchers for entrepreneurship and commercialization of their research;
- to create international networks of innovators and technology entrepreneurs.

The programme is aimed at researchers who are about to develop, or are in the process of developing, a business proposition for their innovation. A select cohort of researchers from the same country will benefit from a focussed period of training in the UK, access to expert coaches, and opportunities for international networking. In the short term they will develop, with the support of the programme, a commercialisation plan for their innovation. In the long term they will benefit from access to an international network of peer innovators, in taking their commercialisation plan forward.
The programme builds on the expertise of The Academy in supporting technology entrepreneurs within the UK through a variety of fellowships and prizes. Fellows supported through this programme will benefit from connectivity to The Academy’s Enterprise Hub, a network of technology innovators, researcher entrepreneurs, and senior industrialists driving and supporting world class innovation.
The programme is part of the broader UK Newton Fund which seeks to build international science and innovation partnerships that promote the economic development and welfare of developing countries.

The Programme
Fifteen successful applicants (‘Leaders in Innovation Fellows’) will be invited to attend an ten-day residential programme, in the UK, arranged and supported by the Academy.
Week 1 – An activity based learning week combined with external visits and master class sessions.
The first week of training involves getting familiar with Business Modelling and Customer Markets along with visits to a UK University Incubator and a site visit to an Industry Partner. The groups will start working with their coaches to start to develop their business plans. This will be rounded off with expert Master Class sessions presented by prestigious Fellows of the Academy.
Week 2 – Intensive training programme in entrepreneurship and innovation leadership
The second week is more classroom style leaning with a training programme hosted by the Royal Academy of Engineering. It consists of a training programme in innovation leadership, delivered by expert trainers, and based on existing training programmes of the Academy for UK researchers. The course will focus on skills and knowledge in:

  • Operations and leadership;
  • Finance, IP and regulation
  • Presenting and pitching to investors and customers;
  • Negotiation skills.

Importantly, over the course of both weeks, there will be time for each fellow to develop their own business plan and pitch decks, while receiving guidance and coaching. The week will conclude with a competitive pitch session to a panel of expert judges including senior Academy Fellows. 
During the programme, Fellows will also benefit from opportunities to network with coaches, representatives of technology driven organisations, and each other. All participants in the LIF programme will automatically join an international network of innovators and coaches clustered around the Academy’s Enterprise Hub.
Please note that the residential programme will be conducted entirely in English.
Dates and Location
As well as the training and mentoring programme, international flights, airport transfers and other UK travel incurred by the programme, all hotel accommodation, breakfast and evening meals will be paid for by The Academy.
However, please note that successful applicants will be responsible for arranging, and paying for their travel insurance and visa, as required, and covering any other expenses incurred during the programme.

Eligibility Criteria
Through their research, applicants must have developed (or co-developed), or be in the process of developing (or co-developing) a new technological innovation. Applicants should have the ambition to take a leading role in creating a new business to commercialise this innovation.
Specific eligibility criteria are as follows:

  • Applicants must be Filipino citizens of, or have full resident status in the Philippines.
  • The applicant’s innovation can be any new product, technology or service, based on research in engineering defined in its broadest sense to encompass a wide range of fields, including: agricultural technology, biotechnology, chemical engineering, civil engineering, computer science, design engineering, electrical and electronic engineering, ICT, materials science, mechanical engineering, and medical engineering.
  • The innovation should have the potential to benefit the applicant’s country, or other developing countries, in terms of improving social welfare and driving economic growth.
  • The primary application of the innovation must NOT be in the defence or military sector.

Note that previous experience of commercialisation or involvement with technology transfer is not required.


Upon their return to the Philippines, the fellows shall undergo a landing program to contextualize their learnings abroad through simulations, lecture and case studies. For 3 days a month, for 6 months, the fellows shall attend the Science and Technology Entrepreneurship Program handled primarily by AIM. It shall cover topics such as:

  • Marketing and Brand Management
  • Product Design and Development
  • Accounting and Finance for Start-Ups
  • Forecasting and Valuation
  • Fund Raising and Negotiations
  • Business Set-up

The program is designed to tackle the general areas of Strategy, Innovation and Entrepreneurship, Marketing, Operations, Financial Management. It shall culminate in a Final Defense and Demo Day, where they showcase their product and pitch for their business.

Fellows who complete this program will be awarded a post-graduate certificate by the Institute.