For students

Startup Summer Accelerator 

Get paid to work on your sustainable startup idea this summer.

Startup Summer Accelerator 2023 - banner

If you are working on your business idea and want to get investment ready, the Startup Summer Accelerator is just for you. Described by previous participants as “the best programme in Edinburgh to accelerate your business from idea to reality”. Be inspired by local entrepreneurs and excited for investment opportunities. 

The greatest innovations of the next decade will be climate related. For this reason, we have partnered with the Edinburgh Earth Initiative, to bring you the Startup Summer Accelerator. This 12-week intensive learning and leadership online programme is designed to get sustainable student businesses, with high growth potential, investment ready. 

You will receive £3,000 in funding for attending the accelerator so that you can learn and work full-time on your sustainable business idea over the summer.   

The accelerator is aimed primarily at businesses with a climate focus or with an idea that will help to advance any of the United Nation’s 17 Sustainable Development Goals. We’re looking for students who have an innovative business concept and can prove that there is a market need for their product or service.  

With regular masterclasses and weekly coaching and mentoring, you’ll develop new skills, access new learning, and connect with like-minded entrepreneurs. We aim to instil a growth mindset that will help you become more resilient and help accelerate your business growth. Sessions cover topics such as market validation, product development, finances, pitching, sustainability, marketing and sales, leadership, and investment and funding.  

The cohort will also receive expert mentorship and coaching, peer to peer sessions, and gain industry insight through weekly events featuring top entrepreneurs and investors from Edinburgh’s startup community.

Will return in 2024


Please note that this programme is run remotely. You do not need to be in Edinburgh over the summer to take part. The accelerator has two online sessions per week that participants must attend. These sessions will start on the 2nd of June and run until the final demo day on the 7th of September. There will also be a two week break commencing the 17th of July. 



  • At least one co-founder must be a current student from the University of Edinburgh or have graduated in the last two years  The person attending the sessions must be the University of Edinburgh student or graduate
  • You must be able to dedicate at least 40 hours a week (remote working) on your business. You must attend all workshops and sessions (2 each week), with most sessions being held at 10am-12pm Tuesdays and Thursdays GMT 
  • Exhibit enthusiasm for working on a startup idea
  • Be able to communicate ideas clearly and concisely

Each startup will be paid £3,000 in total at the beginning of the accelerator to attend all sessions. While allowances will be made if you cannot make an online session, it is expected you fully engage and attend as many sessions as you can, to receive the funding. 

Pitch support

We offer pitch support support and advice for those applying for the Startup Summer Accelerator and encourage all applicants to take advantage of this incredible learning opportunity. Now closed. 


I have become more confident, and I believe in myself and my business more.

2022 participant 

It was great to connect with other founders on a personal level to discuss the similar issues we are all experiencing creating that sense of community that help businesses succeed.

2022 participant 

Having someone that offered a "safe space" to talk within was great.

2022 participant
Startup Summer Accelerator 2023 - banner 2


Inspire Launch Grow - competition

Enter our biggest competition to be in with a chance of winning part of £20,000 plus a choice of either a photography package or professional pitch-deck. For all students and recent graduates from the University of Edinburgh. Deadline 10am on 27th March.

Find out more


Startup Basics - programme 

Whether you're an aspiring entrepreneur or simply curious about the world of startups, our comprehensive Startup Basics programme is tailored to meet your needs. Equip yourself with the essential knowledge. resources and guidance to kickstart your entrepreneurial journey. With a series of workshops that cover topics such as: validating your startup, prototyping, pitching and funding. 

Find out more and book now