Plans to ensure that Britain innovates now so that it has a thriving digital economy in five to 10 years time are included in a government report published today. The Technology Strategy Board, the government body that exists to promote business innovation in technology, has contributed to the Digital Britain Report and has been assigned the role of leading the technology and innovation efforts required to ensure that Britain has a successful digital future.
The organisation's input to the report focuses on ‘next steps'; the actions that Britain needs to take now to ensure that it takes a sustainable and business focused approach to the challenge of growing the digital economy. The report reveals the Technology Strategy Board's plans to work across government and alongside the Research Councils, the National Endowment for Science and Technology and the Arts (NESTA) and other regional bodies to address the wide-ranging challenges that exist within the digital arena.
The main objectives outlined by the Technology Strategy Board in the report are plans to:
- Create a digital test-bed online, allowing business and users to explore the effects of alternative network operating models, business models and service platforms
- Apply a secure and holistic approach to infrastructure, technology and business models encouraging all participants in the digital ‘value chain' to innovate together and devise profitable solutions
In support of these activities, the Technology Strategy Board will invest £30m.
The organisation's vision is that all participants in Britain's digital economy should benefit fairly from the creation, distribution and consumption of digital content and services. The organisation's Chief Executive Iain Gray said;
"We are proud that government has assigned us the role of championing this activity and want to encourage different players within the digital arena to work together to help solve the problems that could hold their business back, so that they can all profit from a slicker and more profitable digital economy in the future.
"There are plenty of business models and service provision methods that don't really work at the moment or reap the profits that would really boost the UK economy and we think that by providing a test-bed for new ways of working we will be able to come up with innovative solutions for the digital world."
To complement the Digital Britain report and to provide more detail on our specific plans, the Technology Strategy Board is publishing ‘Our strategy for Digital Britain'
Today, in line with the publication of Digital Britain, the Technology Strategy Board also launched its Innovation Strategy for the Creative Industries, which sets out recommendations for future focus and investment to support creative industries and digital media businesses. The strategy focuses on two cross-cutting themes:
- Increased standardisation, interoperability and exploitation of meta-data in digital media business to allow content owners to profit from their work by enabling new business models and charging methods to emerge.
- Support for the creation and integration of cross-platform content products and services to allow the creative industries to benefit fully from new business opportunities within the digital arena.
One of the Lead Specialists on the Technology Strategy Board's Creative Industries team, Dr Jeremy Silver said:
"Providing support to create a vibrant legitimate online marketplace for the creative industries is our priority. Change is risky and expensive, but the cost of not changing is even greater.
"The strategy has been developed following extensive consultation and is aligned closely with the Digital Britain report. It demonstrates how the Technology Strategy Board plans to work with the creative industries to assist businesses in maximising the opportunities of their transition into the digital domain and gives support to key new areas which might not otherwise be explored but have great economic growth potential within the sector. "
The Technology Strategy Board, established in 2007, has already invested £15m in Collaborative Research and Development projects within the creative industries. The organisation will be communicating with businesses and entrepreneurs about the best way to implement the strategy.