Gordon Brown’s surprise ‘giveaway’ will inevitably grab the headlines, but was there more to today’s budget than 2p in the pound off income tax? (Isn’t it odd, by the way, how politicians can make allowing us to keep more of our own money sound like an act of unparalleled generosity).
What was no surprise at all was to hear the chancellor praising to the heavens the role of innovation in the future of the
It’s a familiar theme for Brown, and the extra investment in science funding is certainly welcome, if a little strange.
After all, it was only a couple of weeks ago that the
It is also hard to quibble with the extension of R&D tax credits.
There was one area, however, in which Brown, whether as chancellor or prime minister, really could give innovation in the
That area is government procurement. If you can manage to sit through an entire budget speech, there is no better opportunity to grasp the mind-boggling scale of the sums that are spent by government on our behalf.
Billions of pounds are tossed around to meet a pledge here and a pledge there, and when it comes to the big-spending departments – health, education, defence – the billions flow like water in a fast-moving stream.
A lot of this money is spent in areas where
Defence, security and medical devices are a few that spring immediately to mind. It seems both fair and good for the innovation economy that those
A formal requirement for
Those with keen ears will also have heard the chancellor mention new measures to encourage co-operation between universities and business. Well, The Engineer got there first. Our Technology & Innovation Awards do exactly that. Visit https://www.theengineer.co.uk/awards for full details.
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