Government Plans Enterprise Research Centre
The Government has unveiled a plan to create an Enterprise Research Centre that will help shape Government policy on economic growth strategy.
With funding of £2.9 million, the centre is a collaboration between the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS), the British Bankers Association (BBA), the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) and the Technology Strategy Board. Its role will be to develop a greater understanding of the factors affecting business investment, performance and growth.
Business and enterprise minister, Mark Prisk, said:
“The Government is committed to boosting enterprise and giving entrepreneurs the right environment to be successful and grow. We are creating a network of thousands of business mentors. We are also launching a £10 million start-up loan scheme to provide young people with a range of business support and access to a small amount of capital to start their business.”
“Research is vital to ensure that Government makes evidence-based decisions about how to develop these schemes and improve the business environment in the UK. By collaborating with partners and bringing together leading academics we will be able to formulate long-term policy that will help to stimulate economic growth in the UK.”
Applications are being welcomed from academic institutions to form the centre. They will close on 4 September 2012 and the successful bidder will be announced in the Autumn.
Angela Knight, chief executive of the British Bankers’ Association, said,
“We believe the insight we gain will help inform policy, provide a focal point for research, bring key knowledge together in one place and help banks better serve their businesses customers. We also hope the research will help policy-makers, business organisations and investors to work together to further develop initiatives that support enterprise and the UK growth agenda.”
Iain Gray, chief executive of the Technology Strategy Board, said:
“It’s essential that we gain a better understanding of the way innovative SMEs in the UK access finance. We can use this knowledge to flex and develop our programmes so that they are even more tightly aligned to business needs.”
How the Enterprise Research Centre will be of benefit to small businesses remains to be seen.