The UK will face a decade of stagnation and “mounting deprivation” unless the government stimulates investment in low carbon and digital technologies, according to a report by the Big Innovation Centre.
Report co-author Will Hutton said too few public bodies had a grip on how to benefit from these emerging ‘general purpose technologies’, which also include health science and cyber-security.
Mr Hutton said the government needed to take a lead because of a lack of confidence among businesses.
The report recommended building up the Technology Strategy Board - a quango supported by the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills – to more effectively fund research into general purpose technologies.
Mr Hutton said: “Britain is in an economic corner, and we must now innovate our way out of stagnation. This requires a wholesale shift in the way we think about growth.
“Britain’s patchwork of institutions, networks and public agencies is not fit for purpose. The government has already recognised the importance of this agenda but the time has come to make it happen.”
The report was published to coincide with the launch of the Big Innovation Centre research institution at an event attended by business secretary Vince Cable. The centre is an initiative set up by the Work Foundation and Lancaster University.