Sharelab Scotland

This project started in July 2018 and is ongoing
Funding applications – Open


The Scottish Government is partnering with Nesta to find and support early stage projects that build and/or use collaborative digital platforms to tackle challenges around sustainable energy and transport; focusing on the most vulnerable consumers.


Why are we doing this?

ShareLab Scotland aims to find and support viable projects that demonstrate how collaborative digital platforms can be used to create positive social impact in innovative, scalable ways. As part of the fund, Nesta will support the Scottish Government in putting into practice the recommendations of the Scottish Expert Advisory Panel on the Collaborative Economy, as published in their report in January 2018.

What are we doing?

ShareLab Scotland builds on Nesta’s previous work on researching and funding startup ideas that draw on the collaborative economy to create social benefits for all.

We also have a long tradition of supporting collaborative activities to inspire innovation. For example the Innovation in Giving Fund and the Centre for Social Action Innovation Fund (in partnership with the Cabinet Office) have supported organisations that bring together groups in collaborative ways to address social challenges and help their communities thrive.

Funded by the Scottish Government and delivered by Nesta, grants of £15,000 – £33,000 are available for organisations delivering benefit to communities within Scotland.


The Scottish Expert Advisory Panel on the Collaborative Economy was set up in April 2017 to provide advice, expertise and to make recommendations to Scottish Ministers on how Scotland can position itself to take advantage of the opportunities of the collaborative economy.

Chaired by Helen Goulden, Chief Executive of the Young Foundation and formerly Executive Director of Nesta’s Innovation Lab; the panel delivered its findings early in 2018.

The need for the Scottish Government to seize the opportunity to shape – or else be shaped by – digital, collaborative platforms was a key message delivered by the panel. This means creating the right environment for innovation; to develop and support new platforms that meet currently unmet needs within Scotland, with the aim of delivering more than just economic value but actively shaping the collaborative economy in new sectors and industries to the benefit of the people of Scotland. The ShareLab Scotland fund will support this to be delivered.

Eligibility and how to apply

ShareLab Scotland will support and fund ideas that use collaborative digital platforms and innovative business models to create real social benefit for people living in Scotland. The first briefing webinar will be held at 3pm on Wednesday 18 July and the first briefing workshop will be on Tuesday 24 July in Edinburgh. Further dates / locations will added as demand becomes apparent.

For further information and to reserve a place please email us at

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