Government commitment to knowledge industry critical for economic recovery

Leading thinktank The Work Foundation has told the Government that it must use the spending review to make a firm, long-term commitment to support growth in knowledge-based industries, as they are key to new jobs being generated.

In its submission to the Treasury, the Foundation says that in order to construct a credible plan for sustainable economic recovery the Government should commit a decade of funding to the following sectors:

  • science, technology, research and development, design and the creative sector;
  • higher education; and
  • public investment in the physical, energy and digital infrastructures.

Ian Brinkley, associate director of The Work Foundation, said: “The UK’s reliance on the knowledge economy as a driving force of the recovery has never been greater. Over the past 30 years, knowledge-intensive services have provided the highest levels of new jobs, but for this potential to be realised, the Government must make a long-term commitment to support the right areas of the knowledge economy through the most effective tactics.”

The submission also proposes the creation of an annual “comprehensive innovation review”, which would include targeted initiatives to strengthen the UK’s capabilities in the creative industries and the instigation of a financial and skills system with specialised support for innovation and entrepreneurship.

Brinkley added: “Patterns from recent recessions show how key the knowledge economy is to recovery. The paper we have submitted to the Treasury sets out in detail exactly which policies will ensure that rich opportunities are not being squandered or completely missed.”

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