Minister sets out post-Brexit priorities for UK science and innovation

Earlier this week (25 July), Minister for Universities and Science, Jo Johnson, was in Manchester to set out the Government’s post-Brexit priorities for UK science and innovation.

Johnson outlined three fundamental strengths he believes the UK must now build on in order to continue to play a leading role in the global scientific community:

“First and foremost, we have a long established system that supports, and therefore attracts, the brightest minds, at all stages of their careers. We fund excellent science wherever it is found…

“Second, we have excellent scientific infrastructure here in the UK – in universities, in existing research institutes… and in new institutes…

“Third, we have access to major research infrastructures across the world, such as the Large Hadron Collider, in which the UK plays a leading role.”

The UK is hugely successful at innovation and the aerospace, defence, security and space sectors are leading the way in this, whether they are developing the next generation aircraft engine or leading exploration projects on measuring gravitational waves in space. At the Farnborough International Airshow, UK businesses and research institutes showcased world-leading innovative technologies to a global audience.

It is now more important than ever to maintain and enhance the UK’s R&D capabilities. At a time when confidence is key to economic stability and continued success, it is important for the Government and industry to stimulate additional investment in the short-term, ensure longer-term access to R&D funding and work together to build confidence as the country negotiates its exit from the EU.

This month Farnborough attracted representatives from 75 different countries to the UK and secured £85bn of orders and options for aircraft, engines and support – worth over £11bn to the UK economy. As at the Airshow, it is important that the Government and industry continue to demonstrate that the UK is open for business.

The full speech can be read here.