A Government Minister came to Imperial on a fact-finding mission as part of a recent industrial strategy announcement.
Lord Prior met Professor Alice Gast, President of Imperial, and Professor Lord Ara Darzi, Director of the Institute of Global Health Innovation at the College, at the Hamlyn Centre.
The Minister at the Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy came to the College on one his first visits as part of the Government’s consultation process on the Industrial Strategy Green paper, which was unveiled by Theresa May, UK Prime Minister, on 23 January 2017.
The green paper aims to build on our strengths and make the UK one of the most competitive places in the world to start and grow a business.
As part of the ten point plan outlined in the green paper, the Government announced that it was focussing on ‘investing in science, research and innovation’. Lord Prior’s visit to Imperial was to see first-hand the types of technologies and innovations that will drive UK excellence into the future.
Professor Gast said: “The government is rightly putting science, research and innovation at the heart of its industrial strategy - and Imperial is ready to play a leading role. Medical robotics is one area where the UK can translate its scientific excellence into substantial economic and societal benefits.
“It was a pleasure to showcase Imperial’s world-class research to Lord Prior. We look forward to sharing our expertise and discoveries to help make a success of industrial strategy.”
In particular, Professor Gast and Lord Darzi showcased the research that is being carried out at the Hamlyn Centre. Lord Prior met researchers in Professor Guang-Zhong Yang’s team, to get a sense of the new types of imaging, sensing and robotics that will be used to address the global health challenges the world currently faces.
Professor Yang said: “Robotics and AI are important to a diverse range of sectors including healthcare, manufacturing, transport, aerospace, oil and gas. The UK has significant strengths in many of these areas. Cultivating world-leading sectors such as this would ensure the UK will lead not only in scientific pursuits but also commercial ventures.”
“At Imperial, we are delighted to work with the government to drive world leading research in robotics and AI, developing the skills needed, as well as supporting business, and creating a vibrant eco-system that will support the British industry and its international competitiveness.”
Lord Prior added: “The UK is world renowned for its leadership in research and innovation, and through our Industrial Strategy we will build on these strengths to bring more pioneering research and support the creation of high-skilled jobs across the country.
“We need excellent science hubs, such as the Hamlyn Centre at Imperial College London, to continue developing technologies that will help us address modern challenges and market our world-leading ideas”.
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