UK government claims last year has seen record investment in UK science research

9 February 2024 | Muriel Cozier

The UK government has said that in the last year it has invested a ‘record £19.4 billion’ in research, which it says ‘is the highest level [the UK] has ever seen.’

It added that data indicated that every £1 invested by Innovate UK for grants in business innovation returns more than £3.60 in direct business benefit, and a total economic return of more than £6.20.

It comes as the government announced a £100 million award to biotech companies to help develop technologies to tackle a range of challenges, from innovative farming to pandemic readiness. The funds have gone to six ‘Engineering Biology Mission Hubs’ and 22 ‘Mission Award’ projects across the UK. The entities will look to build on the potential for engineering biology, not only to tackle challenges but to boost economic growth.

Michelle Donelan, Secretary for Science and Technology said: ‘Cementing the UK as a science and technology superpower by 2030 is more than a slogan. It is a goal we must reach if we want to grow our economy, continue creating well paid jobs and building a better, healthier and more prosperous future for the UK.’

Other developments announced by the Department for Science, Innovation and Technology, which this week marked the first full year of its establishment, included the launch of an interactive Innovation Clusters Map.

The government said the map is intended to help policy makers and investors to better understand, engage with and invest in the UK’s innovation ecosystem. The map was developed in collaboration with Cambridge Econometrics, the Data City, and the Innovation Caucus. The methodology and analysis for developing the map has been shared by the government.

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