Accelerating Business Innovation across the UK, published by the Technology Strategy Board (TSB), sets out how the Board is working in partnership with the English Regional Development Agencies (RDAs) and the Devolved Administrations to align and co-ordinate their activities and funding for the benefit of businesses across the UK.
To date, the RDAs have plans to align well over £400m of their funding with Technology Strategy Board priority areas over the three-year period 2008-11 - greatly exceeding the target for the period of £180m, set in October 2007. While not formally part of these plans, the Devolved Administrations (of Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland) have similarly worked with the Technology Strategy Board to align with and support agreed innovation and technology priorities in areas such as energy, health and life sciences, digital and creative industries, low carbon technologies and advanced manufacturing.
The report shows that there is a clear fit between national priorities and action taking place across all regions to promote innovation and support innovative businesses. It highlights that, by working together, the Technology Strategy Board, the English RDAs and the Devolved Administrations are helping and encouraging UK businesses to turn their ideas and new technologies into new industries. By pooling expertise and resources in this way, businesses nationwide and the economy as a whole can benefit.
Examples of aligned activity and funding include:
- large-scale planned investments as part of Technology Strategy Board’s innovation platforms;
- significant RDA/DA co-investments in large-scale collaborative research and development projects;
- development and funding of recognised centres of expertise that directly support and promote Technology Strategy Board technology priorities;
- provision of demonstrator facilities to accelerate the take-up of new technologies;
- RDA/DA practical and financial support to boost the numbers of knowledge transfer partnerships (KTPs) in their regions and to support the roll-out of the new shorter KTPs;
- RDA/DA support for knowledge transfer networks (KTNs) to increase awareness of and participation in KTNs by businesses;
- Provision of specialist and targeted business support in priority technology areas.