On 17 December 2014, the UK government presented its science and innovation strategy for 2016-2021 in its publication Our plan for growth: science and innovation.
This document strongly supports a knowledge based economy, and the UK government is committing £5.9 billion capital to support scientific excellence from 2016 to 2021, the most long term commitment to science capital in decades. Investment in research and other forms of innovation helps businesses to reach higher productivity, create high quality jobs and develop new markets and services. In order to address the challenges ahead, the proposed plan is based on 6 elements: deciding priorities, nurturing scientific talents, investing in scientific infrastructures, supporting research, catalysing innovation and participating in global science and innovation. The core principles to meet these goals are: scientific excellence, agility to seize new opportunities, high levels of collaboration, the importance of place of proximity for people and organisations and demand for openness and engagement with the world.
With this commitment the UK government gives a strong and positive signal to the European scientific community echoing the views of EPS on the importance of funding basic science, which is a strong contributor to economic, cultural and social development.