Design Council's response to the 2017 Budget
Today’s Budget made a number of positive announcements including the £2.3 billion invested into R&D, the development of the National Retraining Scheme, £84 million to upskill 8,000 computer science teachers, £42 million to pilot a teacher development premium for teachers working in areas that have fallen behind, investing £15.3 billion in housing and £204 million for innovation and skill in construction.
If we are to deliver on these areas, from skills, to housing, to new technologies then we have to value design. Design will be central to delivering the houses we need, the skills we require and the technologies we use. The cut in the growth forecast shows that we have to invest in the productive areas of the economy. Our upcoming research on design skills will make clear that people who utilise design skills are significantly more productive than the average worker, delivering almost £10 extra output per hour.
The Budget was an important step forward in setting out how we build an economy fit for the future, and we are looking forward to supporting and collaborating on a number of the measures. If we are to create the high-value jobs, build the homes people need and take advantage of the technologies we are investing in, we have to value and invest in design.
Design Council's CEO Sarah Weir OBE said:
“We appreciated hearing the Chancellor’s announcements today on education, lifelong learning, as well as research and development. All of which demonstrated the Government’s readiness to tackling the challenges of our future economy. However, more needs to be said about design. The speech, which focussed on science, innovation and emerging technologies, did not mention design at all. This was disappointing, particularly as we know that design contributes over £71 billion to the UK economy, and that there is an ever-increasing skills gap. To deliver an agenda that creates long term growth and boosts productivity we must also realise the importance of design
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