Empowering purpose-driven organisations to create positive social impact and achieve more
The AI for Social Impact 2021 programme helps purpose-driven ventures in the UK advance their AI solutions to create positive social change. For the third year running, Microsoft for Startups UK and Social Tech Trust will select a cohort of organisations with a commitment to a social mission to join this 4-month programme.
"The passion from entrepreneurs for solving some of the world's most critical and challenging societal issues is palpable. The combination of their ideas, what they'll learn from others and their development journey through this programme, is where I see the impact and the opportunity."- Clare Barclay, Microsoft UK CEO
This year, we’re looking for organisations that support the UK healthcare, manufacturing and resources industries to recover faster and better from COVID-19. Impact should include improving the lives of patients, communities, employees and customers, in these sectors, in the following categories:
Revolutionising manufacturing & resources
Applications close on the 15th of January 2021. Check our FAQs for eligibility criteria and supporting information.Apply now
The Social Impact programme is designed by Microsoft, Microsoft for Startups and Social Tech Trust to give purpose-driven ventures the holistic commercial, technical and social impact support they need to succeed.
The 4-month programme kicks off with community building activities and deep dives into each individual venture, so that we can understand how best to support you and set milestones for your venture together.
The Social Impact Curriculum covers three streams:
Business fundamentals, commercial strategy and raising funds.
AI fundamentals e.g. AI ethical principles, cognitive services essentials and machine learning deep dives.
Social transformation, genuine user engagement, managing impact.
The curriculum will also support you on a number of cross-cutting themes essential to any purpose-driven venture, such as: leadership, partnerships, team and operations.
The curriculum is delivered through a mix of online workshops, webinars, panel discussions, and more.
4 months in total. March 2021 - June 2021, graduation in June/July 2021. Exact start date to be confirmed.
The aims of the programme are to:
Revolutionising manufacturing & resources
The Application process will open on the 30th of November and close on the 15th January.
The Microsoft AI for Social Impact Cohort is a 4-month programme which is delivered remotely. It aims to provide you with access to a variety of events, workshops and other supporting benefits and services designed to help you develop your business from a social impact, technical & business perspective.
You can learn more about some of our amazing 2019 & 2020 Cohort in these articles and videos as well as by following the STT and Microsoft for Startups on Twitter.
All organisations will remain part of the Microsoft for Startups community for a following 8 months to continue the technical and sales enablement development.
The alumni will also join Social Tech Trust's portfolio where they'll receive ongoing support from the team and have access to a network of social tech alumni.
No - as part of the UK Cohort, you will not be onboarded into the Microsoft Global Social Entrepreneurship programme.
There is no monetary cost for you to join this programme. Neither Microsoft nor Social Tech Trust will take any equity in your business. You will retain all your IP rights.
Your company will be responsible for covering your travel and business/living expenses where applicable.
No, you do not have to have an already commercialised/revenue generating AI driven product, however must have the following:
100% of those who were part of our previous AI for Good cohorts said they would recommend the programme.
"Inspirational people have given us so many more ideas. Discussions have reaffirmed what we are going to do. Social impact and tech trust involvement has helped focus our mission - it was an amazing experience, which I will remember for ever. Kudos to the team that ran the course and good luck to them and the next cohort!"
"I have been able to define our AI strategy further as part of the programme and have engaged with highly skilled technical people in ML/AI at Microsoft. Also, I am now in touch with other teams at Microsoft who are working within the immersive tech and healthcare space both in the UK and the US, so I am still engaging with Microsoft staff today to push our solution to the next level."
Isabel, Founder & CEO
"I found the workshops far superior to anything else that I have attended, every workshop I was able to take something away that added value. The quality of expertise we were exposed to was fantastic and I found the support of the cohort was also fantastic, we were all happy to help each other."
Amanda, Founder & CEO