UNITED KINGDOM —In a bold move to bolster cutting-edge research, the UK government has launched a groundbreaking fund that promises to revolutionize science and technology innovations.

The Research Ventures Catalyst, fueled by strategic partnerships with private and philanthropic investors, will unleash tens of millions of pounds to propel groundbreaking discoveries in crucial sectors such as health, technology, and science.

With the UK’s global status as a financial powerhouse, the Catalyst aims to create novel funding avenues and provide up to £50 million (US$US$65 million) of government investment, further augmented by industry and philanthropic support.

The ultimate goal is to foster pioneering research and innovation that will fuel economic growth and address some of the world’s most pressing challenges.

This visionary initiative is set to transform the landscape of UK research, empowering brilliant minds to take calculated risks and explore unconventional working methods that might not receive support through conventional funding channels.

To kickstart the process, the Catalyst is now inviting bids of up to £100,000 (approximately US$130,000) in ‘seedcorn’ funding, enabling researchers to develop comprehensive plans for their proposed ventures.

By bridging the gap between public funding and private and philanthropic investment, the Research Ventures Catalyst opens doors for unparalleled opportunities.

Secretary of State Michelle Donelan stresses the significance of daring to think differently and taking calculated risks in today’s world.

“From Edward Jenner’s invention of the very first vaccine, to the scientists in Manchester who isolated graphene, so many of the Great British breakthroughs which have changed the world would not have been possible without people who dared to do things differently, and take calculated risks. In today’s world, that approach is just as important as ever,” Michelle said.

From groundbreaking healthcare advancements to pioneering new industries, research and innovation are keys to unlocking numerous benefits and opportunities for society.

The Catalyst’s call to private and philanthropic partners in the City and beyond echoes the government’s commitment to reinforce the UK’s science and technology prowess.

The aim is to mobilize real financial firepower behind the nation’s world-leading scientific advancements.

Partnerships with industry and philanthropic investors are already proving successful in bolstering the UK’s science sector.

The government is actively engaging with Schmidt Futures, an initiative of Eric and Wendy Schmidt, exploring support of up to US$20 million to spur co-investment in science from private and philanthropic sources.

With a clear vision to deliver agile and innovative funding models, the Research Ventures Catalyst aligns with the government’s response to Sir Paul Nurse’s Landscape Review.

Sir Paul Nurse’s Landscape Review refers to a comprehensive examination and analysis of the UK’s research and innovation ecosystem conducted by Sir Paul Nurse, a distinguished geneticist, and Nobel laureate.

The review was commissioned by the UK government to assess the effectiveness of the nation’s research funding and governance structures and to identify areas where improvements and reforms could be made.

The goal is to amplify the nation’s public sector commitment to R&D spending, with £20 billion set to be invested by the government in 2024-2025.

The up to £50 million (US$65 million) co-investment fund from the private sector and philanthropy through the Research Ventures Catalyst is contingent on business case approvals.

Prospective applicants will be required to secure co-investment for their proposals. For those eager to make transformative contributions to research and seize investment opportunities, the invitation to engage with the Research Ventures Catalyst awaits.

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