The Future of Research and Innovation in Wales

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Unattributed summary of roundtable organised by CaSE, the Learned Society of Wales and Swansea University on 17th June 2020.

This roundtable discussion – with participants from across Wales’ diverse research and innovation (R&I) community, including industry, academia and both the Welsh and UK Governments – was convened to explore the distinctive role R&I can play in Wales can to supporting prosperous communities. The strengths of Wales in R&I and the barriers to increasing research intensity were discussed.

The purpose was to begin the broad-based discussion Wales needs on its R&I future. We aimed to identify key issues facing the nation’s role in the UK’s ambitious plans for increased investment in research and development.

Wales is high on talent, but short on capacity and lacks adequate representation on key UK bodies. Wales needs to be engaged at national and local levels in the UK-wide ‘levelling up’ agenda, to develop appropriate strategies to transform its R&D performance.

We intend to organise further events on this theme in the coming months, addressing in more detail questions such as:

  • How should universities, industry and the public sector collaborate more effectively in the aftermath of Covid-19?
  • How can Wales increase its own investment in R&I, as well as becoming more competitive in bidding for UK funds?
  • How can all our universities increase their research capacity, including their ability to respond positively to the place agenda?
  •  How do we ensure that Wales’s voice is heard within the UK R&I landscape and the UK Government’s ‘levelling up’ agenda?