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Innovate UK welcomes review of business-university collaborations

Dr Ruth McKernan, Innovate UK chief executive: we can use the Dowling Review recommendations to turn the UK into a truly innovative economy

Dr Ruth McKernan on walkway
Dr Ruth McKernan: "I want Innovate UK to think about the future and show leadership."

The chief executive of Innovate UK, Dr Ruth McKernan, has welcomed Dame Ann Dowling’s review of business-university research collaborations.

Dr McKernan said: “This is a very welcome review, and the recommendations that Ann Dowling makes about our innovation ecosystem chime almost exactly with my own.

I want Innovate UK to think about the future and show the kind of leadership that will take these recommendations forward and turn the UK into a truly innovative economy.

We have world class universities but we need to see that excellence turned into economic benefit. We have great clusters of innovation across the UK, often centred around our universities, and we need to make sure the work of those clusters is co-ordinated and properly funded.

Simplifying support

Dr McKernan added: “We also have a duty to simplify the support system for businesses and universities as much as we can, to get their ideas off the drawing board and into reality. These are priorities for me as Innovate UK’s new chief executive.

We have helped thousands of businesses work with universities and build lasting relationships and we want to help many more.

So we will continue to help both universities and businesses see the benefits such a collaboration can have for each other and the economy at large, providing higher skills, productivity and growth.

Innovate UK will be working with the government, funding councils and research councils to respond in detail to Dame Ann’s report in due course.

Published 8 July 2015