West of England launch partnership with Innovate UK

The West of England region has agreed a new partnership with Innovate UK aimed at accelerating innovation in the South West.

Mayor Dan Norris unveiled a joint Action Plan, alongside Indro Mukerjee, chief executive of Innovate UK, at an event attended by over 100 innovation leaders from the scientific, academic and business communities in the West of England.

The Action Plan aims to ensure close collaboration between the West of England and the UK’s agency responsible for driving innovation.

Speaking at the launch at the National Composites Centre, West of England Mayor Dan Norris re-commited to work to strengthen the West’s prowess in areas including AI, quantum, aerospace, and the region’s world-leading creative sector.

Dan Norris said: “Our region has always been a region of innovation and imagination – from Brunel, who ‘built the world’, to Caroline Herschel, the first salaried female scientist. We are home to Concorde, built in Filton, and we created the world’s first commercial hollow chocolate Easter egg we all know and love.

“Today, the West is one of the leading regions for cutting-edge research and innovation. As Mayor, it is part of my role to bring more resources for new technologies, such as AI, hydrogen research and quantum, where the West leads.

“Working in collaboration with Innovate UK will put rocket boosters under my plans to further support the innovators based in our amazing region.”

Indro Mukerjee, CEO of Innovate UK, added: “We’re pleased to launch the West of England Local Action Plan, co-created with the West of England Mayoral Combined Authority, aimed at stimulating and supporting innovation throughout the region.

“As the UK’s innovation agency, Innovate UK works to building strong regional partnerships across the UK to enable innovation and businesses growth, and this is another action for us.

“This plan builds on our existing strong partnership, with the goal of tackling local challenges, connecting growth opportunities across the UK, and propelling the West of England as hub of innovation.”