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Topics and policy

Economy and development

Outstanding research and innovation advance our economic, social and cultural well-being and our health. In modern economies they are a key source of competitive advantage and can help increase productivity.

The UK has created a world-leading research base, which provides the foundation for new ideas and discoveries, and fuels economic growth and the creation of high-value jobs and skills in our knowledge-driven economy.

A stable long-term investment environment for research, innovation and skills would help to secure future growth and competitiveness.

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Our analysis and advice

  • Research driving productivity

    Response to the House of Commons Business, Innovation and Skills Committee consultation on the Government's productivity plan.

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  • People and the Planet

    This project was a major study investigating the links between global population and consumption, and the implications for a finite planet.

    Read more about the project

  • Reforms to the UK’s higher education, research and innovation system

    We are working closely with the Fellowship and the broader research and innovation community to engage with the Higher Education and Research Bill.

    What is the Society doing?

  • Post 2015-development goals

    Response to the UK International Development Committee’s Inquiry into Post-2015 Development Goals.

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  • Building a stronger future: Research, innovation and growth

    The UK National Academies set out key priorities and actions for the next Government to make the UK the location of choice for world class research, development and innovation.

    Download the statement

  • Investing in the UK’s intellectual capital

    Submission to HM Treasury ahead of the 2015 spending review.

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Also of interest

In Verba blog

Fellows working in this area

Dame Nancy Rothwell

Dame Nancy Rothwell is President and Vice-Chancellor of The University of Manchester, the first woman to lead the university. She is also Co-Chair of the Prime Minister’s Council for Science and Technology.

Her research in the field of neuroscience has contributed towards major advances in the understanding and treatment of brain damage in stroke and head injury.

Sir John Sulston

A chemist and biologist, Sir John Sulston was jointly awarded the 2002 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine.

He directed the Sanger Institute (now known as the Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute) from 1992 to 2000, which had a key role in the sequencing of the human genome. He also chaired the Working Group for the Royal Society report ‘People and the Planet’.