• Budget welcomed by UK’s Research and Innovation Bodies
    Philip Nelson

News & Views

Budget welcomed by UK’s Research and Innovation Bodies

Mar 21 2017

The first tranche of challenges to be supported by the Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund (ISCF) and additional support for high skilled research talent, has been welcomed by the UK’s Research and Innovation leaders. The Spring Budget announced an initial investment of £270 million in 2017-18 to kick-start the development of disruptive technologies that have the potential to transform the UK economy.

Dr Ruth McKernan, Chief Executive of Innovate UK said: “The Chancellor’s announcement today (March 8) is a great example of how the Industrial Strategy challenge fund will deliver the science that business needs. The first three challenge areas are: developing revolutionising battery technology, getting innovative medicines to patients more quickly and developing robots for use in hazardous environments. The UK has scientific expertise in these areas and we have excellent companies ready and willing to translate the technology into business growth across the UK.

“The Challenge fund is like nothing we have seen before in the UK, and it has enormous potential to deliver. These challenges are just the start and Innovate UK and the Research Councils are already working together, building on the evidence we’ve gathered from businesses across the country to look at the next tranche of support we can provide to get the UK’s researchers and businesses working together and firing on all cylinders.”

Professor Philip Nelson, Chair of Research Councils UK said: “The Chancellor’s announcements are most welcome. Long-term funding for research and developing high-skilled research talent is vital to the UK’s future as a science power, allowing us to continue feeding the pipeline that transforms research into products and services. The UK is at the fore in many aspects of these fields, but countries across the globe are putting effort and resource in too, so these investments are strategically significant.

An investment of £250 million over the next 4 years will also support additional PhD places and support for new fellowships within areas aligned to the Industrial Strategy Budget welcomed by UK’s Research and Innovation Bodies.

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