Published: 6 March 2023

Today, the Government announced a new UK Science and Technology Framework, which aims to cement the UK as a world-leader in research and innovation over the next decade, making it a Science and Technology Superpower by 2030.

Nicola Perrin, MBE, CEO of the Association of Medical Research Charities said:

“If the UK is to become a science superpower, research needs sustained investment with a clear strategic direction. It’s good to see the first outputs from the new Department of Science, Innovation and Technology recognise this as a priority. We look forward to seeing further detail about implementation, and particularly to understand how the new Science and Technology Framework can build on existing strategies, such as the Life Sciences vision. We are pleased to see an emphasis on incentivising philanthropic funding – charities are vital partners to drive research that provides benefits for patients and society.”

The Framework includes many areas of relevance to medical research charities, including a pledge of up to £50 million to help incentivise philanthropic funding in science, an accompanying announcement of an extension of the financial guarantee provided to the UK’s Horizon Europe applicants and the publication of Sir Paul Nurse’s Independent Review of the Research, Development and Innovation Organisational Landscape.

The Review acknowledges that “Long-term, large-scale charity funding is a valued and essential component of research support in the UK”, but also highlights areas such the difficulties facing clinical researchers in combining their research careers with the demands of their clinical training and NHS duties. It also recommends that charities and Government should work together to address the shortfall of the Charity Research Support Fund and discuss how to fund proper end-to-end research support.

Nicola Perrin, MBE, CEO of the Association of Medical Research Charities commented:

"It is good to see Sir Paul highlighting charity funding as a valued component of research support in the UK. AMRC member charities have invested £15 bn in medical research over the last decade. We believe a stable and sustainable research base is essential for incentivising competitively awarded funding from charities.

We welcome discussions between Government, universities and charities to develop a sustainable approach to long-term funding, including addressing the shortfall of the CRSF.”