York Outer MP presses government on commercialising university research to power growth

Julian Sturdy, Member of Parliament for York Outer, today urged the government to ensure greater focus on commercialising research to generate economic growth as part of its plans for raising UK spending on R and D (research and development).

During questions to the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, Greg Clark, in the House of Commons, Julian Sturdy asked:

What actions is the government taking to make sure commercialisation of research is at the centre of its plans for higher R and D spending, so that world-class output of institutions like York University in my constituency can rapidly find its way to the factory floor?”

Responding for the government, Sam Gyimah, the Minister for Universities, Science, Research and Innovation, emphasised that “realising the full economic and social benefits of the excellent research in our universities” was central to government policy in this area. He also outlined how projects like UK Research and Innovation, the Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund and the Higher Education Innovation Funds provided routes to translate research into jobs and growth.

After leaving the Commons chamber, Julian Sturdy said:

I think it is vital to press Ministers on this, because how and how much we as a country spend on research and development is one of the most important factors affecting the kind of job market and economy in York we will leave to our children and grandchildren.

The government’s plan to raise our national research and development spend is very welcome, but to reap the full benefit we have to ensure innovation from institutions like York University is promptly translated into marketable products through commercialisation, so it can produce a return through new employment and growth. 

I will continue to bang the drum on this to ensure our city can benefit from new economic opportunities.”