The first tranche of challenges supported by the Industrial Strategy Challenge fund (ISCF) has been welcomed by research and innovation leaders. The spring budget announced an initial investment of £270 million in 2017 to 2018. This is to kick-start the development of disruptive technologies that have the potential to transform the UK economy.
First announced by the Prime Minister at the 2016 CBI Annual Conference, the ISCF will help identify and develop UK industries that are fit for the future, driving progress in technologies where the UK can build on our existing areas of industrial and research strength.
In his Budget speech earlier this week, the Chancellor of the Exchequer Philip Hammond announced funding for the first three competitions in the ISCF:
- Leading the world in the development, design and manufacture of batteries that will power the next generation of electric vehicles, helping to tackle air pollution
- Developing cutting-edge artificial intelligence and robotics systems that will operate in extreme and hazardous environments, including off-shore energy, nuclear energy, space and deep mining
- Accelerating patient access to new drugs and treatments through developing brand new medicine manufacturing technologies, helping to improve public health