Business research and innovation activity in Cumbria: a review of evidence

Peck, Frank and Mulvey, Gail (2016) Business research and innovation activity in Cumbria: a review of evidence. (Unpublished)

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Abstract

The purpose of Cognitive Cumbria is to improve understanding of the local and regional knowledge processes that encourage the growth and quality of innovative and creative businesses across Cumbria. This report has been prepared by the Centre for Regional Economic Development (CRED) at the University of Cumbria to contribute towards this overall purpose. Definitions of research and innovation are specified and applied to the County of Cumbria using relevant available data and sources of information. The report concludes by considering future prospects for innovation and business performance in Cumbria.

This report has been commissioned at a time when there is intensified interest in research activity, technological development, science and innovation at virtually all levels of economic policymaking. At the European scale, research priorities specified in the Horizon 2020 and also European Regional Policy give much greater attention to understanding the process of research and innovation than in the recent past. So too at national level, UK Government is placing much greater emphasis on business innovation as a key to unlocking productivity and international competitiveness:

Business innovation is a vital ingredient in raising the productivity, competitiveness and growth potential of modern economies. Providing the right economic conditions for and using appropriate policy instruments to encourage innovation in the UK is a central objective. Measuring the level of innovation activity in the UK and identifying where policy might be best targeted contributes to the pursuit of that objective. (UK Innovation Survey, 2015)

Vince Cable, Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills under the Conservative-Liberal Coalition Government, in a speech delivered in July 2014 (BIS, 2014a), stated that “Of the productivity growth that took place in the UK between 2000 and 2008, one third (32%) was attributable to changes in technology resulting from science and innovation. Innovative firms are also more resilient and more likely to export.” More recently, Science Minister, Jo Johnson (BIS, 2015b), has also stated in a speech in July 2015, that “UK taxpayers invest £10 billion a year in research and innovation…and we will invest new capital on a record scale – £6.9 billion in the UK’s research infrastructure up to 2021 – which will mean new equipment, new laboratories and new research institutes.”

Item Type: Report
Departments: Centre for Regional Economic Development
Depositing User: Anna Lupton
Date Deposited: 22 Mar 2017 12:34
Last Modified: 03 May 2017 12:09
URI: http://insight.cumbria.ac.uk/id/eprint/2745

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