ACOSVO Becomes a Partner in New Programme: The Intrapreneurship Lab

Scottish Government

A unique partnership of the Scottish Government, businesses and third sector organisations has been announced that will create an innovation programme for Scotland's voluntary sector. Through this programme, charities can access funds and support to accelerate their enterprising ideas.

The Intrapreneurship Lab, which complements renowned innovation programme ScotEdge for Scottish business entrepreneurs, is based on the expertise developed by Aberlour and is designed to create a more enterprising culture within charities. It creates an opportunity to 'pitch' for significant investment while developing 'intrapreneurship' - the enterprising skills people need while working within an organisation. The Intrapreneurship Lab will create a hub for innovation and accelerate the growth of projects and services to help some of the most vulnerable people in our society.

The Intrapreneurship Lab will provide this opportunity to the whole voluntary sector in Scotland thanks to investment by The Scottish Government and The Scottish Grant-Making Trusts Group.

Cabinet Secretary for Finance and Sustainable Growth, John Swinney said: “Through Scotland CAN DO we are working collectively across the public, private and third sectors towards becoming a world-leading entrepreneurial and innovative nation.

The Intrapreneurship Lab is a first class example of a collaboration that combines the resources of Team Scotland for both the social and economic benefits of Scotland’s communities and is the very epitome of the CAN DO approach.

I am delighted to see the voluntary sector grasping the challenge of Scotland CAN DO and look forward to seeing the positive outcomes that will no doubt flow from this endeavour.”

Speaking on behalf of the Scottish Grant-Making Trusts group, Kenneth Ferguson, Vice Convener said:  “Nimbleness and innovation within the voluntary sector is critically important and we must continue to fund great services against a backdrop of less resource in the voluntary and public sectors.   In the same way we strive for entrepreneurship in business, Third Sector organisations need inspiration and support to the grasp the opportunities that exist to bring about social change.  The Intrapreneurship Lab will provide not only inspiration, but the practical skills and on-going support required to calculate and to cope confidently with risk-taking, in the name of service improvement.”

The details of the Intrapreneurship Lab and the investment available will be unveiled in the spring of 2015.


  1. The Intrapreneurship Lab is a partnership between: The Scottish Government, Aberlour, The Scottish Grant-Making Trusts Group, RBSACOSVO, The Social Enterprise Academy and Social Enterprise Scotland.

  2. Scotland CAN DO is the Entrepreneurship and Innovation Framework for Scotland.  The document highlights the importance the Scottish Government attaches to entrepreneurship and innovation, the values that will inform our work and our future priorities for action.

  3. The Scottish Grant-Making Trusts Group (known as Scottish Grantmakers) was established in 1993 and comprises individuals who are involved in the practical administration of grant-making in Scotland, normally holding key positions in their trusts or foundations. The Group allows members to share best practice and through dialogue, to keep up-to-date on matters affecting the charity and voluntary sector. The forum also provides opportunities for networking and for working together.