New Science, Innovation and Technology Secretary outlines aims

The newly created Department for Science, Innovation and Technology, as well as its new Secretary Michelle Donelan, has begun outlining its ambitions for the future of innovation and the tech sector. 

Ms Donelan outlined the importance of the department during a visit to the Rosalind Franklin Institute which develops new technologies in the health research space.

The Technology Secretary said: ‘Science and technology has the potential to change our world beyond recognition and improve all our lives.  

A brand new and dedicated department for Science, Innovation and Technology is key to the Government’s plan to grow the economy – generating better, well paid jobs and driving improvements in health, education and transportation.’ 

In addition to centering innovation, the department is also described as bringing together the ‘five technologies of tomorrow’ listed as quantum tech, AI, semiconductors, engineering biology, and future telecoms. 

A number of priorities for the year ahead have also been outlined by the new department, which was created after a recent cabinet reshuffle by Prime Minister Rishi Sunak, including optimising public research and development investment, putting public services at the ‘forefront of innovation’, and strengthening international collaboration on science and tech. 

The UK Research and Innovation Chief Executive Professor, Dam Ottoline Leyer, said: ‘The establishment of the new Department for Science, Innovation and Technology is an incredibly exciting development, signalling the Government’s commitment to building a fully joined up research and innovation system. 

‘This initiative will capitalise on our world-class talent and skills to deliver excellent public services, a vibrant innovation-led economy and high-quality jobs for citizens across the UK.’ 

Creation of the new DSIT brings together aspects of the previous Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy as well as the former Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, the latter of which Ms Donelan was previously the Secretary of State for. 

As part of her visit to the Rosalind Franklin Institute, which was launched in 2021 after a £103m government investment, Ms Donelan also announced a further £40m funding for the research there which includes looking into methods to spot the early signs of degenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s.

Photo by Simon Dawson / No 10 Downing Street


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