Open Innovation Pathfinder

UKGBC is working with its members in partnership with Sustainable Ventures and EIT Climate-KIC to develop a new model for open innovation designed to overcome the barriers and market failures associated with slow innovation in the built environment sector.
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April 16, 2019

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Research & Innovation

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Get involved: If you have been involved in an open/collaborative innovation process and would be willing to share your experiences with us, please contact Zachary Rootes

The built environment sector contributes 47% of UK carbon emissions and requires significant innovation to reduce its impact. However, R&D spend in the sector represents just 0.16% of revenue, compared to 26% and 32% in the Automotive and IT sectors respectively, meaning that innovation can be slow. 

UKGBC have partnered with Sustainable Ventures and EIT Climate-KIC to undertake research into understanding existing barriers and market failures in upscaling sustainable innovations quickly and effectively in the built environment, with a view to developing a new model for open innovation in the sector. We believe that open innovation – “use of purposive inflows and outflows of knowledge to accelerate internal innovation” – which remains niche in the sector, would enable greater progress. There is evidence from other sectors that open innovation reduces costs, accelerates time to market, increases differentiation in a market and creates new revenue streams.  

Through research and engagement with our members and innovators in the start-up community, we will identify the root causes of these issues, and then formulate a response by developing a new model for driving a more innovative culture in the sector. In so doing, we aim to optimise the system and allow better and quicker market access for sustainable innovation, and to stimulate demand for climate-friendly goods, products and services. 

We plan to publish the outputs in the Autumn.  

If you have been involved in an open/collaborative innovation process and would be willing to share your experiences with us, please contact Zachary Rootes

Project partners

  • Sustainable Venture resize 3
  • Climate KIC resize