finance

Scottish researchers set to share £213 million UK Government science funding



The UK Government has announced a £213m investment to upgrade scientific infrastructure, with Scottish facilities set to benefit.

The money is aimed at equipping universities and research institutes with what they need to drive forward research that will help the UK respond to major challenges, including the Covid-19 pandemic and achieving net zero carbon emissions.

The pot includes £27m for upgrading and purchasing core equipment for the use of researchers across the UK.

Medical Research Centre units in Glasgow, Edinburgh and Dundee will share £2.8m to buy equipment such as microscopes and key computational resources to support Covid-19 research, and long-term programmes in cell biology, human genomics, and wider virology.

This will enable researchers to detect and model disease in more detail than ever before, helping the UK respond to Covid-19 and boosting resilience for future pandemics, as well as other global diseases, such as cancer and dementia.

The Science and Technology Facilities Council (STFC) will receive a £20m investment to upgrade campus infrastructure at its sites in Edinburgh, Oxford, Liverpool City Region and North Yorkshire.

This will enable the council to continue developing flagship projects covering a range of topics, from pre-launch satellite testing to the search for dark matter.

The STFC will receive a further £10m for laboratory upgrades to support the scientific programmes across laboratories in Edinburgh, Oxfordshire, Liverpool and North Yorkshire.

A further £34m will go to upgrading the UK’s digital research capabilities, with urban data centres in Glasgow, Liverpool and Oxford sharing more than £1m for new hardware to pursue research that will show how Covid-19 has affected social and economic activity.

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Science Minister Amanda Solloway said: “From the world’s most detailed microscopes tracking disease to super computers supporting Covid-19 research, our investment will enhance the tools available to our most ambitious innovators across Glasgow, Edinburgh and Dundee.

“By doing so, scientists and researchers will be able to drive forward extraordinary research that will enable the UK to respond to global challenges as we build back better from the pandemic.”

UK Government Minister for Scotland Iain Stewart added: “The UK Government is committed to supporting Scotland’s world-leading scientists and researchers so their hard work can continue to improve lives in the years ahead.”

The funding forms part of a £300m commitment to upgrade scientific infrastructure across the UK, as part of the government’s R&D Roadmap published last July.



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