The new climate for Railway investment in Great Britain

The debate about the growth prospects of the UK economy often focuses on the role of infrastructure investment, especially road and rail investment. The potential of the rail sector has been recognised by the European Community’s in its ambitious plan for investment this decade in R&D, Horizon 2020. The European rail sector has emerged as… Read more »

Developments in the UK Nuclear Supply Chain

In Russia, India and China some 45 reactors are under construction. Across Europe there are 140 nuclear reactors that are either under construction, in the planning process or under consideration in a total of 23 countries. If NNB Generation, the joint venture between EDF Energy, Centrica and Areva, decide to build new nuclear reactors at… Read more »

The UK Industrial Strategy Debate Heats Up

The CBI has been investigating the UK’s global competitors’ approach to industrial strategy as part of their campaign for the UK to develop a better framework for rebalancing the economy.   As they put it, ‘ most countries have a clear vision that underlies their policy-making, one that highlights where that country sees itself in the… Read more »

Current issues in Lean

MIT’s Lean Aerospace Initiative has rebranded itself as the Lean Advancement Initiative (LAI), broadening its scope and relevance. Siemens in the US has joined LAI. Working with the Project Management Institute and the International Council on Systems Engineering, LAI has published a substantial study – The Guide to Lean Enablers for Managing Engineering Programs –… Read more »

High Value Manufacturing Strategy

Commentators have been calling on the Coalition recently to develop an industrial strategy. In fact the Defence Industrial Strategy and Life Sciences Strategy are already in place. At the end of May the Technology Strategy Board (TSB) launched the UK’s High Value Manufacturing Strategy. This follows the increased priority that the previous government placed on… Read more »

Skills for the future competitiveness of the UK Pharmaceutical Industry

The pharmaceutical industry is a major UK manufacturing sector with an exemplary export record generating gross value added the same order of magnitude as the aerospace sector. The NHS is a major domestic customer of the sector. UK pharmaceuticals are also important in terms of business funded research and development in the UK. Many European,… Read more »

Public Attitudes towards Manufacturing’s Role in Rebalancing the UK Economy

The Centre for Industry and Government at the Institute for Manufacturing  (IfM) at Cambridge University have just published some important new survey based research on public attitudes to manufacturing in the UK in partnership with YouGov-Cambridge. The research explores public attitudes to ‘rebalancing the UK economy’, an important theme in the Coalition’s economic policy statements…. Read more »

The competitiveness of the European Mechanical Engineering Industry

The UK Mechanical Engineering industry (UKME) employs some 210,000 people, 6.7% of the total employees in the EU Mechanical Engineering Industry (EUME). UKME contributes €13bn gross value added per annum to UK GDP, 7.4% of the EU27 value added total for the sector. This makes it the fourth largest ME sector in the EU27 in terms… Read more »

Global Opportunities in 2012 for the UK Automotive Supply Chain

The recent announcement at the Geneva Motor Show that Nissan will build a new compact model, the Invitation, at its factory in Sunderland follows a whole series of similar investment announcements by vehicle manufacturers in the UK throughout 2011. One of the  most important is the decision by Jaguar Land Rover to construct a new… Read more »

Employer Led Skills

The Coalition Government is moving ahead rapidly this year with its Employer Ownership of Skills Pilot. The UK Commission on Education and Skills has just published a prospectus for the programme which sets out a very tight timetable for the first round of funding.  The deadline for employers to register is 13 April 2012 and… Read more »