We established the Real Innovation Awards in 2016 to recognise and celebrate the reality of the innovation process: it’s messy, time-consuming and tough. The winners are extraordinary people who persisted when the going got tough, learnt from their mistakes and had the courage to rethink their businesses in the face of disruption. Have you got what it takes to be a successful innovator?
From fossil fuels to green energy: the Ørsted story
Transforming a Danish state-owned power company into a renewable energy business with wind in its sails
How I went from boredom to the boardroom
The tedium of a comfortable salaried existence was the spur that drove Avnish Anand to co-found India’s first online jewellery store
From wine novice to connoisseur in seconds
How Vivino's co-founders have achieved global success with an app that gives people instant access to wine reviews
Could pond life save the world?
Mitsuru Izumo kept trying to find a way to produce Euglena on a large scale. Now it’s being used for everything from food to biofuel
Innovation? It’s child’s play
Jeff Weers’ love of baseball may have inspired him to develop a breakthrough in drug delivery but chance also played its part
New and taboo: 5 tips from an innovator
FabLittleBag’s Martha Silcott shares the highs and lows of getting her invention to market
Dubsmash: the power of persistence
Dubsmash fine-tuned its lip-synching app through constant iteration. It’s now a full video messaging app, used by more than 100m people in 193 countries who share 35 videos every second.
Fighting fire with fire: a story of reinvention
Steve McGuirk’s transformation of the fire service led to cost savings and fewer fires
An innovative solution to nuclear waste
Andy Barr’s core business used to be manufacturing dredging tools for scallop trawlers. Now he’s helping clean up decommissioned nuclear power stations
True grit: saving babies through innovation
Jane Chen was so determined to save newborn infants’ lives, she moved to India to get her venture off the ground
HILS: innovating for social impact
Creativity is key at Hertfordshire Independent Living Service, joint winner of the If At First You Don’t Succeed Award
Deliveroo: delivering quality
What drives the winner of The Best Beats First Award?