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What skills do I need to have?

The main attributes we’re looking for are enthusiasm and a willingness to try out new things. You don’t need any specific pre-existing knowledge or experience.

Do I need to be a scientist or have technical expertise/experience?

Definitely not; I-solve is intended for postgraduate students and research staff from all disciplines and the teams will be deliberately selected to contain people from different backgrounds in each, so we’d like to receive applications from both scientists and those with other backgrounds. We actively encourage new ideas and new ways of thinking about the projects which don’t necessarily require scientific or technical skills.

Do I need to have business qualifications or experience?

Definitely not. As with the question above, the teams will be selected so that each contains people with as broad a range of skills as possible.

How much time will it take up?

There will be 2 hour meetings once a week which you will be expected to attend as part of your team. In addition your team will work individually in order to complete the project. This may vary from team to team and from week to week through the project, but past participants in i-Solve projects have averaged about 4 hours per week.

What do I get at the end?

You will receive a certificate showing your participation in I-solve and the team judged to have provided the best solution will win an award which will be presented at a prestigious awards evening. 

What will I learn?
You gain the hands-on experience and satisfaction of "learning by doing". You will work on a real project where your ideas and conclusions will influence future directions and outcomes. Skills gained through participation in i-Solve include:

  • Teamworking & team management
  • Brainstorming
  • Identify the key commercial benefits of a technology or product innovation
  • Identify relevant competitors and potential collaborators
  • Identify and contact relevant industry experts
  • Cold calling and extracting useful information from commercial contacts
  • Analytical skills to use incomplete data from a variety of sources to draw a justifiable conclusion
  • Presentation skills (for a non-expert audience)

Will I get paid?

No, you won’t get paid for taking part. We think that the benefits to you are good enough to make you want to take part.

Do I need to select a project in advance and where can I find out about the projects?

The i-Solve project managers will select the teams so that they have as broad a range of skills and backgrounds as possible. Please see the Projects page on this web site for details of the current projects.

What happens to the projects after we’ve completed our reports?

This will depend on the recommendations you make and many other factors including available funding, academic factors, but we would hope that the information you provide will be used by the PIs to inform their commercialisation of their technology.

Do I need to have a team in order to apply or can I choose my own team?

No, you will be allocated to a team by the Project Directors in order to get the best mix of skills and backgrounds in each team. Your area of interest will be taken into consideration and you’ll be asked to state this when you apply.

How do I apply?

Please see the applications section.

What are the selection criteria?

Please see the applications section.