Royal Society response to Levelling Up White Paper

02 February 2022

"Levelling up requires high quality jobs and the people with the skills to fill those jobs. The focus on these issues in today's white paper is welcome but the words are easy to say, it is the delivery that the government will be judged by.

"Investment in research and innovation is key to long term economic growth and the UK has outstanding universities, research institutes and innovative businesses all over the country. As regional anchors, they have a clear role to play in driving productivity and skills and improving people's lives and opportunities. Today's white paper recognises this and that is welcome, but the investment needs to be new and not just a repackaging of old money. We also cannot afford to 'rob Peter to pay Paul' by investing in some localities at the expense of world leading research in already hugely successful research clusters.

"The Levelling Up White Paper rightly identifies education as a priority but investing more money in a system that is not fit for purpose, will not fix our problems. Our current education system is too narrow and is not giving enough young people, especially those from more disadvantaged communities, the skills they need for today's workplace."

Adrian Smith, President of the Royal Society