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Lords to quiz innovation heads in new inquiry into Catapults

Monday 7 December 2020

Tomorrow, the House of Lords Science and Technology Committee will hear from public research experts as it launches a new inquiry into the contribution of innovation Catapults towards delivering the Government’s Research and Development (R&D) Roadmap.

Catapults are not-for-profit, independent technology and innovation centres, which connect businesses with the UK's research and academic communities. The Committee will be investigating how these innovation Catapults in the UK can stimulate long-term private investment in R&D.

In this first evidence session, the Committee will seek to identify how collaboration might be improved, investment scaled up and how Catapults can contribute to the ‘levelling up’ agenda.

The session can be followed live at from 10:15am tomorrow (Tuesday 8 December).

Witnesses will be:


  • Professor Dame Ottoline Leyser, Chief Executive at UK Research and Innovation (UKRI)
  • Dr Ian Campbell, Former Executive Chair at Innovate UK


  • Alexandra Jones, Director of Science, Research and Innovation at the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy

Questions the committee will likely cover include:

  • What are the barriers to commercialising innovations in the UK?
  • In what sectors have the Catapults been most successful in attracting private sector investment?
  • What new developments in science and technology hold most promise in terms of commercialisation?
  • Should new Catapults be developed in other sectors?
  • Should there be more collaboration with smaller businesses and with universities?
  • To what extent can the Catapults help facilitate the Government's ‘levelling up’ agenda?

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