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Lords Committee says the Catapult Network should be the default mechanism for exploiting promising technologies and sectors

The UK’s Catapult Network welcomes the report published today by the House of Lords Science and Technology Committee: ‘Catapults: bridging the gap between research and industry’.

The report describes the findings of their inquiry into how Catapults can better contribute to delivering the UK’S R&D roadmap.

The Catapult Network Chair, and CEO of Digital Catapult, Dr Jeremy Silver commented:

“This report recognises the value of the Catapult Network as a key national strategic asset, maximising the UK’s potential from innovation, unlocking huge economic growth, supporting the Government’s levelling-up agenda, and addressing key global challenges. It is extremely encouraging that the report asks for a long-term and more integrated role for the Network in contributing to the Governments target for R&D to reach 2.4% of GDP by 2027.

The Catapult Network will continue to nurture strong collaborations across research and industry, helping to create the local, regional, and national innovation ecosystems that extract the best value from public investment. We will continue to work alongside colleagues across UK Government, UKRI and Innovate UK, to advance this mission.”

The UK has an extremely strong academic base of which the Catapults are uniquely placed to help to de-risk early adoption of ideas and bring them to market. The pandemic has highlighted how the power of the Catapult Network can quickly mobilise the business and research communities to respond quickly to a crisis. 

A key recommendation of the report was that the Government makes the best possible use of the Catapult Network, promoting it as the UK’s national innovation asset, and using it as the default mechanism for exploiting promising technologies and sectors. The Committee recommend that the Government promotes its R&D strategy confidently, in the UK and internationally.

A summary of the key recommendations is available on the House of Lords Science and Technology Committee webpage.

The full report is available for download here.

About the Catapult Network

The Catapult Network supports businesses in transforming great ideas into valuable products and services. We are a Network of world-leading technology and innovation centres established by Innovate UK. We deliver impact across the UK economy, enabling businesses to thrive in global markets. Since inception the Catapults have collectively played a lead role in delivering over 14,000 industry collaborations, over 5000 academic collaborations and supported over 8,000 innovative SMEs across a wide range of sectors and extended international partnership projects.