The Royal Academy of Engineering welcomes the publication today of Sir Paul Nurse’s review of the UK research councils, Ensuring a Successful Research Endeavour.

Professor Ric Parker CBE FREng, Director of Research & Technology at Rolls-Royce plc and Chair of the Royal Academy of Engineering Research Committee, says:

“The Royal Academy of Engineering welcomes Sir Paul’s review. Investing in UK research is vital for economic and social growth, and we therefore support moves to make these investments more effective. Making the research landscape more strategically aligned and less complex will open up opportunities for greater collaboration, and echoes the recommendations of Dame Ann Dowling’s recent report on University Industry Research Collaboration. 

“Particular attention should be paid to ensuring that there is a focus on research excellence, noting that excellent research encompasses use-inspired research, as well as curiosity-driven research.  The report supports the Haldane Principle and reinforces that those best placed to make detailed decisions on the content, shape, location and executors of research programmes are those actively involved in the research. It recognises, however, that industry should have an input on applied research, and moreover, that society and politicians have a duty and right to define the societal challenges and high-level priorities, and appropriately direct funding at the macroscopic scale.

“Sir Paul has rightly identified the importance of continuing to develop the strategic relationships between the Research Councils and Innovate UK. Innovation investment is crucial to ensure that the UK extracts real value and social impact from its investments in research, and will be enhanced by stronger links between these organisations.”

Notes for editors

Royal Academy of Engineering. As the UK’s national academy for engineering, we bring together the most successful and talented engineers for a shared purpose: to advance and promote excellence in engineering. We provide analysis and policy support to promote the UK’s role as a great place to do business. We take a lead on engineering education and we invest in the UK’s world-class research base to underpin innovation. We work to improve public awareness and understanding of engineering. We are a national academy with a global outlook.

We have four strategic challenges:
- Make the UK the leading nation for engineering innovation
- Address the engineering skills crisis
- Position engineering at the heart of society
- Lead the profession

For more information please contact:

Jane Sutton at the Royal Academy of Engineering
T: 020 7766 0636
Jane Sutton