Network Innovation Allowance & Network Innovation Competition

As part of the RIIO: ED1, T1 and GD1 price controls Ofgem have introduced the Network Innovation Competitions (NICs) and the Network Innovation Allowance (NIA).

The NICs are annual competitions for electricity and gas, where network companies compete for funding for research, development and trialling for new technologies, operating and commercial arrangements. Funding will be provided for the best innovation projects which help all network operators understand what they need to do to provide environmental benefits and security of supply at value for money as Great Britain moves to a low carbon economy.

The NIA is a smaller allowance each RIIO network licensee receives to fund smaller scale innovative projects which have the potential to deliver benefits to network customers.

Each licensee group can submit up to five projects to ISP. Submissions will be screened against specific requirements and eligibility criteria. Following ISP, licensees will be able to merge similar projects but will not be allowed to substantially alter the high level solutions or the method they wish to use. Further information can be found in the Governance Documents for the Electricity NIC and the Gas NIC.

Network Innovation Allowance Governance Document Electricity

Network Innovation Allowance Governance Document Gas

Network Innovation Competition Governance Document Electricity

Network Innovation Competition Governance Document Gas


The NIA & NIC aim to provide a financial catalyst for innovation on GB electricity and gas distribution and transmission networks as GB move towards a low carbon economy.


ENA Gas and Electricity Network Innovation Competition (NIC) Call for Ideas 2019/2020

As part of the Gas and Electricity Network Innovation Strategies, the Great Britain (GB) networks have committed to working closely together to ensure the benefits of new technologies and processes are realised across the whole energy system. The Networks are committed to delivering high-quality innovation projects that deliver value for money for customers, and want to work with other innovators in the energy industry to help deliver this. As such, the networks want to hear about new, innovative and low carbon solutions to the priority areas identified in the network innovation strategies. ENA would like to invite you to propose your innovative project ideas to us so that we can take them forward and trial them on the networks.

More information

The Call for Ideas opened at 9:00 on Monday the 16 of September.

  • A guidance document for the ENA NIC Call for Ideas is available here 
  • The full set of Google Form questions are available here (for reference only - submissions must be via the Google Form).

On Wednesday 25 September, ENA hosted a webinar to share more information about NIC funding, the Call for Ideas and the innovation focus areas within it. A recording of the webinar is available to view below and the slides from the session can be downloaded here

For those attending the LCNI Conference in Glasgow on 30 – 31 October, you are welcome to come and find out more from those at the ENA stand. 

Idea Submission

Please complete and submit your response via dedicated Google Form here by 5:00 pm Friday 8 November 2019 to have your project proposal considered

Get in touch

We look forward to seeing your ideas. If you have any questions, comments, or concerns please contact [email protected]