Innovation Institute

Certified Innovation Programme Accreditation

Helping you to recognise talent and embed Innovation Skills & Competencies in Employees and Learners

A fundamental part of an organisation’s unique innovation capability is defined by its people’s knowledge, skills and competencies, which in turn determine the organisation’s ability to respond to disruption and sustain growth and economic viability. The productivity and creative problem-solving ability at individual or organisational level often relies on regular engagement in innovation training and related professional development activities.

As the UK’s professional body for Innovators, the IKE Institute’s Certified Innovation Programme® (CIP) provides a robust accreditation method that assesses, certifies and recognises an organisation’s innovation programmes and initiatives in accordance to international standards, as defined by the ISO 56002 Innovation Management System Guidance Standard (2019).

The IKE Institute operates two accreditation options

1) Certified Innovation Programme

Organisation-wide accreditation for an in-house innovation programme/initiative

Certified Innovation Programme

2) Certified Graduate Development Programme

Specific accreditation on Innovation components within a graduate development scheme/programme

Certified Graduate Development Programme (Innovation)®

The choice of which accreditation option you would like to pursue should be identified at the application point to best reflect your context and need. However, the accreditation process specifications for the two options remain the same.   

In addition to recognising the Innovation Programme, the successfully accredited organisation will also be recognised by the Institute as an IKE Assured® provider.

Benefits »

Achieving the Certified Innovation Programme Accredited status helps your organisation to:

  • Validate employee / learner innovation core competencies developed through an innovation programme that reflects international standards of best practice.
  • Motivate and develop a growth-mindset and pro-innovation culture.
  • Enhance organisational collective competence in innovation to deliver performance effectiveness, and, manage change efficiently.
  • Unleash creativity in people and strengthen critical thinking, experimentation, discovery and exploitation skills.
  • Reinforce connections and collaborations between employees and the organisation’s ecosystems.
  • Increased confidence in the value of innovation.
  • Visibly recognise and celebrate individuals and teams’ successes and achievements.
  • Accelerated professional membership to the IKE Institute and assure continuous learning and knowledge exchange.

The IKE Assured® Accreditation can also be used as a key differentiator to attract and retain employees. It also signals to your employees and stakeholders the organisation’s focus on developing a culture of innovation.

Who Can Apply For The Certification Mark? »

The Certified Innovation Programme® accreditation is suitable for any public or private sector organisation wishing to demonstrate the value from their innovation programmes.

This professional accreditation can be applied to a range of innovation and creativity schemes, activities and programmes such as:

  • An organisation-wide Innovation Programme;
  • A Graduate /or Apprenticeship Development Programme;
  • A collection of innovation training and learning activities and initiatives;
  • A university/college educational programme in which innovation/ creativity is a component.

Reference To International Standards »

The IKE Institute Validation applies the ISO 56002 Guidance Standard 2019  (available from BSI when defining the baseline for accrediting an organisation’s innovation programme and associated activities.

The IKE Assured Accreditation Framework was initially published in the prestigious Science in Parliament Journal in 2013. Click here to read the article.

What Are The Requisite Criteria To Become Certified? »

This accreditation (which is a formal process that recognises a competence to perform specific tasks) is defined by the IKE Assured Six-Category Framework outlined in Figure 1, and its embedded Innovation Skills and Competencies Matrix®, described in Table 1. The IKE Institute Validation Panel applies this Framework to assess and validate the level of competence and maturity of the applying organisation’s Innovation Programme.

Figure 1
IKE Assured Accreditation Framework®

* Knowledge Exchange is about taking a systematic approach to sharing tacit knowledge –  the knowledge that people acquire through their work experiences, successes and challenges. The main purpose of knowledge exchange is to connect practitioners (in any field or discipline)  with each other so they can discuss their work, learn from one another, and achieve improvements. Sharing knowledge, especially experiential knowledge, is a key ingredient in innovation. Knowledge exchange is essential to achieve continual learning from experience and apply that learning to improve and deliver the organisational mission.

A key function of Knowledge Exchange is to promote the uptake and use of the most effective employee-centric learning and knowledge exchange tools through provision of training, advice and guidance, and facilitation of engagements that support co-creation and collaboration.

Knowledge Exchange makes use of specific tools and approaches (e.g. communities of practice, digital platforms and software tools) that enable online networking and knowledge sharing throughout the organisation and its ecosystems.

Table 1
IKE Assured® Skills and Competencies Matrix

WORKING WITH OTHERS Pursuing opportunities to work with others to develop ideas.

Encouraging a positive attitude to innovation.
Identifying and pursuing opportunities for your team to work with other teams to develop ideas.

Enabling individuals to recognise and take acceptable risks in pursuing innovation.
Identifying and pursuing opportunities for your teams / organisation to work with others to develop ideas.

Establishing a climate of support when pursuing innovation and taking risk, and enabling learning from mistakes. Demonstrating Innovation Leadership Critical Behaviours.
APPROACH TO INNOVATION Embracing innovation and responding constructively to ideas. Identifying and reviewing approaches to innovation within the team, responding constructively to ideas to develop team capacity. Establishing systems to record, measure and reward innovation, sharing learning and knowledge exchange across the organisation.
CREATIVE THINKING Providing ideas, taking existing problems and providing new insights. Identifying and resolving specific problems, providing constructive operational solutions. Identifying and resolving issues, providing solutions and embedding them across the organisation.
DEVELOPING IDEAS Taking new ideas and shoring them into useful form. Identifying ideas which should be developed further, how and when that will happen, and the required resources and business impact expected. Assessing business benefits and approving ideas for new products, services or enhancements, and enabling resources to support development and testing.
IMPLEMENTING IDEAS Turning new ideas into their practical application for business benefit. Approving implementation of ideas, balancing risk, required resources, business impact and level of authority and ensuring impact. Evaluating innovative ideas, approving plans that are viable and ensuring their impact.
DEVELOPING BUSINESS Horizon-scanning for opportunities for growth. Evaluating markets for new products, new services or enhancement of a business. Facilitating delivery of new product, service or enhancement to business model or market.
CREATING INNOVATION CULTURE Exhibiting social intelligence. Persisting and communicating the value of innovation amongst peers. Ensuring that team-working supports the innovation process – from idea generation through listening, designing, experimenting and implementing – to active communication. Ensuring a pro-innovation and growth mindset is supported, and that the innovation strategy is shared, understood and enacted.

Communicating with clarity, impact, and audience empathy.

The Accreditation Process

The accreditation process consists of the following two stages:

Stage 1: Application Process »

Completion of the Application Form provided by the IKE Institute.

The Application Form requires the organisation to satisfy the characteristics needed for the accreditation in accordance to the IKE Assured Accreditation Framework® and this is outlined in the application.

The Form is split into a ‘Support Statement’, and, ‘List of Evidence’ – all focused-on meeting the criteria for each of the six categories:

  1. Innovation Programme Planning (20 Points)
  2. Learning Delivery & Knowledge Exchange Practices (20 points)
  3. Innovation Knowledge, Skills & Competencies (20 points)
  4. Industry & Ecosystem Exposure (10 points).
  5. Information, Advice & Guidance (10 points).
  6. Impact and Value (20 points).

Completion of the Form contributes 75% of the application process.

For each of the six categories, the Form identifies the sections that need to be completed by both the applying organisation and the IKE Assessment Panel.

The Form also provides guidance on the ‘Type of Evidence’ expected in the submission to support the application for the Certified Innovation Programme Accreditation.

Stage 2: Validation Visit by the IKE Institute Panel of Advisors »

The Validation Visit takes place at the organisation. The organisation would be expected to give a Presentation covering the six categories. The visit could include a tour around the facility and/or demonstrations by the applying organisation and part taking in a Question and Answer session by the IKE Institute Panel.

Completion of the Validation Visit contributes 25% of the application process.

The IKE Institute Panel would then provide a final score and a Recommendations Report after the Validation Visit.

The minimum threshold to achieve the CIP Accreditation is 60%.

Annual Review Process

To maintain the CIP Accreditation, the organisation will be required to complete an annual Review Questionnaire at or before the anniversary of them being admitted to the scheme. This will be reviewed by the IKE Institute’s Review Panel and feedback will be provided, accordingly.

Need More Information?



MBDA Missile Systems

"Achieving the IKE Accreditation Award provided external recognition for all our employees that have been involved in the innovation programme. It enabled us to benchmark our content, processes and delivery. It also means that all successful participants on the innovation programme will be eligible for a full membership grade of the IKE Institute and will also be awarded the Certificate of Professionalism of Innovation Practice. This is brilliant news and a great honour for MBDA. 

EDF Energy Campus

“As part of our continuous improvement within Learning, Training and Development at EDF Energy, we wanted to strengthen the innovation skills developed within two of our Campus Training programmes (EDF Energy & Me! and the Structured Approach to Training – SAT) and assess the innovation skills and competencies that are being developed at different levels skills in people as a result of these programmes. We also wanted to highlight the value of developing creative problem-solving capability in our people.

The IKE Accreditation process was invaluable in providing us with a structure on how to build innovation skills within our programmes and achieve the desired business impact. The IKE Innovation Skills Development Framework (covered such categories as approach to innovation, creative thinking, developing a sustainable innovation culture, generating and implementing ideas, value creation).  A key by-product of the IKE Accreditation is the strengthening of employee engagement and the raising of people’s aspirations to achieve more by providing certification to our staff who have undertaken these accredited programmes. The recognition of our EDF Energy & Me! and SAT training programmes through the IKE Accreditation has helped us to underpin not only emerging talent development and quality enhancement initiatives in our business but also to benchmark our approach to innovation skills development much more broadly. The Innovation Institute’s team has shared with us their experiences on developing innovation skills and have provided examples of best practice within and outside our sector.

The External Validation by members of the Innovation Council has meant that we can now follow the action plan for improvement with confidence. We were thrilled to receive the IKE Accreditation Award at Innovisions 2014 by the Minister for Energy and Climate Change.” 

University of Plymouth

“Plymouth University is very proud of its track record in the field of innovation. The entrepreneurial experience of the innovation centre managers, the focus and support for students and client businesses, particularly young entrepreneurs, the methods of engagement such as with business competitions and entrepreneurs-in-residence, and the levels of community engagement, with 16,000 visitors interacting with the centres have all been recognised with the IKE Accreditation.”
Bernard Curren, Director of Cornwall Innovation & Innovation Lead at Plymouth University

Highbury College

"In today's digitally evolving landscape, we needed to create a best practice for developing and sharing our creativity and innovation with staff, students, business and industry partners and the community. I am thrilled that our innovation capability is independently accredited by the Institute of Innovation and Knowledge Exchange. It presents us with a further confirmation for our outstanding status and that we are heading in the right direction."
Principal of Highbury College, Stella Mbubaegbu CBE


"Thales in the UK recognised that innovation has to be treated as a discipline. It adopted the IKE Assured standard to ensure that all of its graduates on the Graduate Development Programme are equipped with the right innovation skills, competencies and tools to enable them to have the right mindset to create the cultural conditions for innovation to flourish. IKE Assured Accreditation Framework supports an organisation helps to prepare its next generation of innovators and embed the right skills, competencies and behaviours that help to drive an organisation’s strategic imperatives."
Katherine Reed Thales UK