The ‘reindustrialisation’of Britain

9 02 2009

Interesting article in the FT today about the ‘reindustrialisation’ of Britain.http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/e6528e46-f603-11dd-a9ed-0000779fd2ac.html

This raises several issues worth discussing. This and other reports looking at the future http://www.nesta.org.uk/attacking-the-recession/ while honourable in trying to find a new dynamism for the UK economy,are infused with low expectations about what we should be aiming for. In the FT article Labour peer Lord Bhattacharyya says,’I can envisage a lot of smaller firms springing up in fields concerning green technology, for instance solar energy production, or electric vehicles.’ The NESTA report sets the goals of innovation as ‘green energy, environmental services,biotechnology and services for an ageing society.’

This spirit of  low expectations and sustainability is one of the main problems we need to confront if the UK is to recover a sense of innovation and spirit. In the past, nations set themselves the tasks of conquering space or curing cancer, thus inspiring large numbers of people to make breakthroughs in all areas of technology and science. Science and innovation flourish best when set free from unnecessary constraints and limitations.

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