UKRI presents strategy for delivering key R&D objectives
UKRI has published its corporate plan to deliver key improvements to the UK’s R&D ecosystem during the next 3 years. The corporate plan builds on UKRI’s five-year strategy, published earlier this year, which sets out long-term, high-level priorities to deliver its vision of “an outstanding research and innovation system in the UK that provides everyone with the opportunity to contribute and to benefit, enriching lives locally, nationally and globally.”
In March this year, the Government also announced the largest ever R&D budget, with a £39.8 billion R&D budget for 2022-2025, with the bulk of this budget, £25 billion, allocated to UKRI to be distributed among UKRI's nine bodies and key programmes. This includes:
a £16.8 billion investment over the 3-year period through core budgets for UKRI’s 7 Research Councils, Research England and Innovate UK
a £2 billion investment over the 3-year period for a new collective cross-council approach to talent initiatives
a £2.9 billion investment over the 3-year period in infrastructure projects
The corporate plan clarifies how UKRI will distribute these resources over the next three years to achieve its vision and six strategic objectives, which are anchored by the four principles of diversity, connectivity, resilience, and engagement.
The Corporate Plan: What are UKRI's six objectives and how will it distribute its resources?
Objective 1: People and careers: making the UK the most attractive destination for talented people and teams from the UK and around the world. To achieve this, UKRI has created a £2 billion pooled talent budget that will support a portfolio of flagship studentships and fellowships across career stages, increasing investment in these programmes by 26% by 2024-25, including a £20 million extra investment to double the numbers of Turing AI World Leading Researcher-Fellowships in the UK.
Objective 2: Places: securing the UK’s position as a globally leading research and innovation nation with outstanding institutions, infrastructures, sectors and clusters across the breadth of the country. UKRI will seek to contribute to the Government and BEIS targets for R&D funding outside the Greater South, investing £100 million in three pilot innovation accelerators in Greater Manchester, West Midlands and Glasgow City Region. Moreover, it will increase its annual investment in infrastructure by at least £200 million to reach over £1.1 billion a year in 2024-25.
Objective 3: Ideas: advancing the frontiers of human knowledge and innovation by enabling the UK to seize opportunities from emerging research trends, multidisciplinary approaches and new concepts and markets. To achieve this, UKRI will invest £3.8 billion through open and responsive calls, through council-focussed investments, which are described in detail in each Council Strategic Delivery Plans.
Objective 4: Innovation: delivering the government’s vision for the UK as an innovation nation, through concerted action of Innovate UK and wider UKRI, including increasing innovation spending by 66%, with a budget of more than £1 billion/year by 2024-25 for Innovate UK to make “the UK the best place in the world to innovate, invest, and grow a business.”
Objective 5: Impacts: focusing the UK’s world-class science and innovation to target global and national challenges, create and exploit tomorrow’s technologies, and build the high-growth business sectors of the future. To achieve this, UKRI is increasing its investment in key technologies of the future, building on the UK’s success in AI, quantum technologies and engineering biology programmes and aligned with the technology families identified in the Government’s Innovation Strategy. This includes developing the next phase of the National Quantum Technologies Programme working through EPSRC to identify investment in future hubs and accelerating the market pull for emergent quantum technologies aligned to the programme.
Objective 6: Organisation: UKRI will seek to be the most efficient, effective and agile organisation it can be, by reducing its business-as-usual operational expenditure from £291 million in 2022-23 to £220 million by 2024-25.
techUK’s Innovation Policy Group is in close contact with UKRI and other key bodies for Research and Innovation in the UK, if you are a member of techUK please reach out to [email protected] to find out more.
You can find UKRI’s full corporate plan including all announcements here.
Read more analysis from techUK:
Sue leads techUK's Technology and Innovation work.
This includes work programmes on cloud, data protection, data analytics, AI, digital ethics, Digital Identity and Internet of Things as well as emerging and transformative technologies and innovation policy. She has been recognised as one of the most influential people in UK tech by Computer Weekly's UKtech50 Longlist and in 2021 was inducted into the Computer Weekly Most Influential Women in UK Tech Hall of Fame. A key influencer in driving forward the data agenda in the UK Sue is co-chair of the UK government's National Data Strategy Forum. As well as being recognised in the UK's Big Data 100 and the Global Top 100 Data Visionaries for 2020 Sue has also been shortlisted for the Milton Keynes Women Leaders Awards and was a judge for the Loebner Prize in AI. In addition to being a regular industry speaker on issues including AI ethics, data protection and cyber security, Sue was recently a judge for the UK Tech 50 and is a regular judge of the annual UK Cloud Awards.
Prior to joining techUK in January 2015 Sue was responsible for Symantec's Government Relations in the UK and Ireland. She has spoken at events including the UK-China Internet Forum in Beijing, UN IGF and European RSA on issues ranging from data usage and privacy, cloud computing and online child safety. Before joining Symantec, Sue was senior policy advisor at the Confederation of British Industry (CBI). Sue has an BA degree on History and American Studies from Leeds University and a Masters Degree on International Relations and Diplomacy from the University of Birmingham. Sue is a keen sportswoman and in 2016 achieved a lifelong ambition to swim the English Channel.
As Associate Director for Policy Neil leads techUK's domestic policy development in the UK. In this role he regularly engages with UK and Devolved Government Ministers, senior civil servants and members of the UK’s Parliaments with the aim of supporting government and industry to work together to make the UK the best place to start, scale and develop technology companies. Neil also acts as a spokersperson for techUK on UK policy in the media and at Parliamentary Committees.
Neil joined techUK in 2019 to lead on techUK’s input and engagement with Government on the UK-EU Brexit trade deal negotiations, as well as leading on economic policy. He has a background in the UK Parliament and in social research and holds a masters degree in Comparative Public Policy from the University of Edinburgh and an undergraduate degree in International Politics from City, University of London.
- [email protected]
Laura is techUK’s Head of Programme for Technology and Innovation.
She supports the application and expansion of emerging technologies across business, including Geospatial Data, Quantum Computing, AR/VR/XR and Edge technologies.
Before joining techUK, Laura worked internationally in London, Singapore and across the United States as a conference researcher and producer covering enterprise adoption of emerging technologies. This included being part of the strategic team at London Tech Week.
Laura has a degree in History (BA Hons) from Durham University, focussing on regional social history. Outside of work she loves reading, travelling and supporting rugby team St. Helens, where she is from.
Pablo Derpich is the Policy Manager for Economy and Innovation at techUK.
Before joining techUK, Pablo worked in Economic Policy research on the topics of innovation and development for governmental and non-governmental organisations (NGOs) in Latin America and the United Kingdom.
Pablo has a degree in Economics (BSc) from the University of Chile and an MPA in Digital Technologies and Policy at UCL Department of Science, Technology, Engineering and Public Policy (STEaPP).