Science & Environment

Ministers unveil science strategy

XFEL accelerator Image copyright Other
Image caption The government plans to invest £30m in an international laser project

The UK government has formally unveiled its strategy for science and innovation.

The new document outlines five key principles that it says should underpin science policy over the next few years.

The strategy also provides further detail for some of the funding priorities outlined in the recent Autumn Statement.

The announcement includes a commitment of £30m to a laser project.

The Chancellor George Osborne had already announced that the UK would be taking the lead in a European rover mission to Mars.

The government says it will invest £5.9bn into the UK's research infrastructure from 2016-2021.

The five principles that the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (Bis) says should inform science and innovation are: excellence, agility, collaboration, place and openness.

Greg Clark, the Science Minister, said: "This strategy builds on the great strengths of British science and enterprise and will make sure the UK is the best place in the world to do science and grow an innovative business."

The government says it will commit £3bn to support capital expenditure - the money going into laboratory infrastructure.

Another £2.9bn will go towards supporting scientific "Grand Challenges", including a £30m UK commitment to XFEL - an international laser project.

A sum of £61m will be invested in a "catapult" - a centre for bringing together expertise from business and science - for High Value Manufacturing techniques.

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