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£37m Institute formed to boost productivity

The Government has today (Aug 21st) announced £32m in funding for the creation of the Productivity Institute which will be based out of the University of Manchester.

The institute aims to lead ground-breaking research and productivity, to boost wages and support the economic recovery in the UK, to get the economy back on its feet as quickly as possible post-Covid.

From September, over 40 researchers from leading UK institutions will work directly with policy makers and businesses to examine the UK’s productivity levels and the issues that impact productivity. These include working from home, workers’ well-being and lack of diversity in the workplace, to identify key policies that could be implemented to unlock growth and deliver jobs.

The institute will look at how technology can be used in order to boost productivity in the workplace, improve working conditions, and accelerate the transition to a low carbon economy to future-proof industry and lower prices for consumers.

Science Minister, Amanda Solloway, said:

“Improving productivity is central to driving forward our long-term economic recovery and ensuring that we level up wages and living standards across every part of the UK.

“The new Productivity Institute and LSE’s innovative research will bring together the very best of our researchers, boosting our understanding of the different drivers of productivity and helping people and businesses earn more in every area of our economy.”

The £37m funding is to be shared between the University of Manchester, which will receive £32m, and the London School of Economics, which will receive £5m.

Imbalances between sectors and regions will also be addressed by the institute, in order to level the playing field across the whole of the UK.

Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) Executive Chair, Professor Jennifer Rubin, said:

“The Institute at Manchester and the LSE research programme address what is arguably the UK’s biggest economic challenge. This funding represents the largest economic and social research investment ever in the UK, befitting its enormous potential to improve lives for millions of people.

“The aim is to ensure that advances in knowledge inform the significant decisions and interventions that policy makers, businesses and individuals must make to improve productivity, and to achieve the attendant improvements in wages and living conditions that doing so can drive.”

PSE Oct/Nov 20

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