Invest in R&D, but don't forget the supply chain!

JJS Manufacturing InsightsIn this new report, the CBI calls for a commitment to increasing R&D spend from 1.7% to 3% of GDP by 2025. This would put the UK on roughly level terms with countries such as Germany and Sweden. They also make the important point that it should be a joint target met by the government and private sector, as it will undoubtedly take a well coordinated partnership to make this happen.

Alongside this we must also ensure that UK manufacturing is ready to make the most of this new technology. As the skills and processes become ever more specialised and complex, this means creating the right environment for innovation and investment in manufacturing as well as product development. This must surely apply both to oems and the sub-contract supply chain? Let’s hope the Industrial Strategy is able to deliver a holistic plan that will fully realise the value available from R&D innovation.

Gene editing, space tourism, self-driving vehicles, robotic limbs, floating farms, London to Sydney in four hours. Game-changing innovations like these will shape the course of the next decade. Many will improve lives across the globe.

With evolving innovations, new technologies, and developing expertise, businesses and governments everywhere are working to tackle many of today’s greatest challenges. Already new energy technologies are reducing the UK’s carbon emissions, UK-developed vaccines are preventing deaths around the world, and healthcare innovations have the potential to save the NHS millions of pounds.

The current pace of change in technology is unrivalled and individuals, companies, and governments are under pressure to keep up.

Here in the UK our position as world leaders in science and innovation is at risk.