TSB lauds progress made in establishing Catapult network of
30 January 2013
The UK Technology Strategy Board says it has made great
progress in establishing a network of world-leading technology and
innovation centres, called Catapults.
Chief Executive Ian Gray, speaking in the House of Lords earlier
this week, outlined the milestones reached since the Prime Minister
announced late in 2010 that the Technology Strategy Board would be
establishing, overseeing and coordinating the network. He confirmed
that all seven Catapults will be open and in business during 2013.
Iain Gray spoke at a meeting in the House of Lords on realising
the vision of the Catapults programme, organised jointly by the
Technology Strategy Board, the Institute of Engineering and
Technology and the Big Innovation Centre and hosted by Lord Broers.
He said that with investment of around £1 billion over the coming
few years, Catapults represent one of the most important
developments in UK innovation and technology and will make a major
impact in the coming decades. This represents a significant
investment by Government and one that has been welcomed across the
research and innovation spectrum. The potential global market which
could be accessed by UK businesses through each of the Catapult
centres is likely to be worth billions of pounds per annum.
At the event, a new report on technology and innovation centres
by the Big Innovation Centre was also published. The report reviews
examples from existing similar initiatives across Europe, outlines
how the success of the Catapults programme might be judged and sets
out some recommendations for how Catapults might best work with
businesses, universities and public bodies to become catalysts for
driving technology innovation and contributing to economic growth.
Welcoming the report, Iain Gray will say that as the Catapults
programme is new for the UK this is uncharted territory, so it is
important to ask what success will look like. While none of the
technology and innovation centres established in other countries is
an exact parallel of the UK’s Catapults programme, he will say that
very useful lessons can be learned from all of them.
Technology and innovation centres were first proposed by the
entrepreneur Hermann Hauser in a report for Government “The Current
and Future Role of Technology and Innovation Centres in the UK” and
by Sir James Dyson in his “Ingenious Britain” report.
The High Value Manufacturing Catapult was the first to open, in
October 2011. The other Catapult centres — Cell Therapy, Connected
Digital Economy, Offshore Renewable Energy, Satellite Applications,
Future Cities and Transport Systems — are currently being
The Current and Future Role of Technology and Innovation
Centres in the UK is available at:
Ingenious Britain is available at: