£3.4Bn impact investment proves the UK is a global leader in research and innovation
The Research Councils UK (RCUK) released reports detailing the impacts of a collective investment of £3.4Bn in 2015/16. This investment drives economic growth by delivering the UK’s Industrial Strategy of increasing productivity, creating high-value industry, jobs and a skilled workforce.
Each research council has produced its own report, showcasing specific examples of the impact of investment through their various awards, programmes and collaborations. The extensive nature of the impact extends from furthering technological advances to combatting disease to breakthroughs in the creative economy.
From a financial and business perspective, the £3.4Bn of research funding has already leveraged an additional £229M of funding from other partners – leading to an extra investment of 7% from commercial, international and academic partner organisations interested in working with UK researchers. The research has already created 57 new spin-out companies and 182 instances of new intellectual property.
"These latest impact reports are valuable documents because they not only show the breadth and diversity of the research the UK research councils fund but also draw attention to the benefits science, engineering and the arts and humanities bring to the lives of UK citizens,” said Professor Philip Nelson, Chair of RCUK.
"Often these positive impacts go unnoticed because they are connected to processes that go on behind the scenes or they are in areas that enable other areas of science, technology and wider research to move ahead. However, these are important stories to tell as they inform the public and can also inspire tomorrow's engineers, scientists and researchers."
Highlights from BBSRC include:
- UK researchers helped prevent lameness in sheep, leading to better welfare and saving £700M for the farming industry over 10 years. Read the impact report: Lameness sheep treatment guidelines save UK farmers £700M
- UK research has led to exciting new products in the healthcare market; scientists created a superfast, affordable device to test for age-related macular degeneration – one of the leading causes of UK vision loss affecting 2M people. Read the impact report: Azul Optics Ltd – From visual ecology to human health
- UK researchers helped create new products for the UK food and drink industry; an established start-up company commercialised a heritage variety of barley called Chevallier, last grown in the UK in the 1930s, for beer production. Read the impact report: The craft of beer – reviving old barley for modern brewers
Read more in the full impact report:
BBSRC invests in world-class bioscience research and training on behalf of the UK public. Our aim is to further scientific knowledge, to promote economic growth, wealth and job creation and to improve quality of life in the UK and beyond.
Funded by government, BBSRC invested £473 million in world-class bioscience, people and research infrastructure in 2015-16. We support research and training in universities and strategically funded institutes. BBSRC research and the people we fund are helping society to meet major challenges, including food security, green energy and healthier, longer lives. Our investments underpin important UK economic sectors, such as farming, food, industrial biotechnology and pharmaceuticals.
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