Ayming calls on the new Labour government to act on Innovation

Ayming launches its Manifesto for Innovation and sets out recommendations to reignite UK innovation

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News & Press
July 11, 2024

London, 10 July 2024: Europe’s largest innovation funding consultancy today publishes its first Manifesto for Innovation as part of a campaign to urge the UK’s new Labour Government to reform Britain’s uninspiring approach to innovation.

The last decade can be characterised by a string of successive attempts to position the UK as a ‘science superpower’. Despite these efforts, flat economic growth and declining productivity is in part a result of a failure to leverage the transformative potential of Britain’s innovation economy.

The UK has an enviable history of innovation and technological breakthroughs but has struggled to compete with the level of investment pushed through by other leading markets, resulting in slumping confidence in the UK’s ability to continue producing world-class R&D.

Last week’s election of a new Government offers the country an opportunity to reappraise its approach to innovation – for the long-term.

But to maximise the potential of Britain’s thriving start-ups and innovative corporations, the new Government must address the obstacles that exist across the entire innovation process. Ayming breaks these down into the three critical stages of the innovation cycle: nurturing innovation, incentivising innovation, and finally, rewarding innovation.

Recommendations include:

  1. Long-term strategy: The Government must review and recalibrate the national strategy for innovation, guided by a genuinely long-term commitment to strengthen business confidence to invest. This must include experimental elements that allow businesses to adapt to rapid change in technologies and markets.
  2. Skills: Extend the scope of the visa programme for highly skilled researchers and technical specialists, and address the domestic skills gaps in STEM teaching, vocational training and apprenticeships.
  3. Industrial strategy & decarbonisation: Reboot the UK’s industrial strategy to counter sluggish growth and productivity and consider matching the scale of investment in the US, EU and other competitor markets in green industries.
  4. Align UK and EU carbon markets: Extend the Industrial Energy Transformation Fund and follow through on proposed reforms to unlock pension fund investment and growth funds for innovative companies.
  5. Identify priority areas: Sectors that deserve special attention include high-value manufacturing, cleantech, and health & wellbeing. These should be prioritised.
  6. Reaffirm commitment to R&D tax relief: Shore up confidence and sustain the incentive to plan and budget for ongoing investment, provide promised additional resources to HMRC, and consult on an advisory board to foster collaboration with the business community.

Mark Smith, Managing Director of Ayming UK says, “Last week’s election offers the UK an overdue opportunity to reassess its approach to innovation. For more than a decade, aspirations of making the UK the “next Silicon Valley” or an international “science superpower” have not been realised due to a lack of understanding by ministers, who have pushed policy through without the necessary data on actual R&D intensity or a comprehension of the impact on smaller businesses. What British businesses need now is a long-term strategy for growth that encompasses every phase of the innovation cycle. It is essential that the Government views each of these components as integral stages within one singular innovation process in order to see the shift required to reboot the UK’s growth.

He adds: “Our recommendations have been pulled together by experts operating across the country’s key innovating sectors, and therefore reflect the very real needs of businesses. We urge our new Prime Minister to consider these recommendations as the Government begins to formulate its industrial strategy.”

Ayming UK’s Manifesto for Innovation can be downloaded here.


About Ayming 

Ayming, the international innovation and performance consultancy, combines highly specialised knowledge across a range of fields with hands-on collaboration to enable our clients and their people to go further.

We are 1300 employees operating in 15 countries across Europe, North America, and Asia. We have a proven track record of providing leadership and sharing insight for over 30 years. By focusing on innovation, finance and people, Ayming consistently delivers a strong return on investment.