The Royal Academy of Engineering welcomes the amendments to the Higher Education and Research Bill tabled by the government on Friday 24 February.

Responding to the announcement, Professor Dame Ann Dowling OM DBE FREng FRS, President of the Royal Academy of Engineering, commented:

“I welcome the amendments to the Higher Education and Research Bill put forward by the government. The amendments address many of the concerns articulated by the engineering and innovation communities.

"In particular, I am pleased that the definition of Innovate UK’s critical business-facing function and role in promoting innovation has been expanded and strengthened. To achieve its aims, Innovate UK requires a close connectivity to its primary customer base of business and entrepreneurs, and an understanding of markets, supply chains and mechanisms of business growth. The creation of UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) also provides an opportunity for the Research Councils and Innovate UK to operate in a more collaborative manner and improve the quality of innovation support overall.

“It is also good to see the inclusion of a requirement for consultation with relevant stakeholders prior to any changes to the fields of activities or names of the Councils being made. Such consultation with the communities who will ultimately be affected by any such decisions will increase the quality of the government’s decision making and increase the likelihood of a positive outcome for UK research and innovation.

“The intention to extend the pilot phase for subject-level TEF by an additional year is welcome. The Academy has been developing a set of metrics for measuring teaching quality that are currently being trialled across a group of global leading universities and we look forward to sharing the findings with the Department for Education later this year.”

Notes for editors

  1. 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
E: Jane Sutton