Feeds

Cambridge tech boss rips gov over innovation cash

'We'll all be painted blue and dancing for tourists'

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Build a business case: developing custom apps

The head of one of the UK's top innovation centres has predicted a future for British citizens as impoverished peasants, painted blue and dancing for tourists because funding for high tech innovation has been pulled.

Walter Herriot, Director of St John's Innovation Centre in Cambridge he said, the money needed for this operation has been diverted to "support for first-time house buyers".

The Innovation Centre is today presenting another two dozen promising start-ups, based on ideas developed in the Cambridge "Cluster" associated with the University.

But funding for this incubation centre has been pulled, said Heriot. He accused the government of "mortgaging the future" of the UK.

He said: "The St John's Innovation Centre has been funded one way or another by government over the past 15 years, to assist early stage businesses ... last year it assisted 400 companies with advice and guidance. Companies that used its services were more than three times more likely to obtain finance, than those who do not.

"However, this programme has now been 'terminated' as the Regional Development Agency budget has been slashed by central government, with funding diverted to social projects - although announced as fresh money."

Herriot denounced the social projects as absurd: "My understanding it that the Innovation Advisory Service has £100,000 on the table. With that sort of money, it will be a Derisory Service, not Advisory. That's all that there is on the table." And the reason, he said, is that £100m is to be given to first-time house buyers.

"You can debate whether the package for first-time buyers will be effective or not - most people say probably not - but just think what we could do with a hundred million pounds!"

The government, said Herriot, "tends to regard the UK economy in isolation, and doesn't take account of our competitors - they don't consider what is going on in the Tiger economies of China, Singapore, India, and indeed, Saudi Arabia. And we don't have the money needed to pay bribes - like the $30m which Vistec was paid to move to New York as part of a $3bn nanoscale technology centre." ®

Next gen security for virtualised datacentres

More from The Register

next story
Assange™: Hey world, I'M STILL HERE, ignore that Snowden guy
Press conference: ME ME ME ME ME ME ME (cont'd pg 94)
Premier League wants to PURGE ALL FOOTIE GIFs from social media
Not paying Murdoch? You're gonna get a right LEGALLING - thanks to automated software
Online tat bazaar eBay coughs to YET ANOTHER outage
Web-based flea market struck dumb by size and scale of fail
Amazon takes swipe at PayPal, Square with card reader for mobes
Etailer plans to undercut rivals with low transaction fee offer
Caught red-handed: UK cops, PCSOs, specials behaving badly… on social media
No Mr Fuzz, don't ask a crime victim to be your pal on Facebook
US regulators OK sale of IBM's x86 server biz to Lenovo
Now all that remains is for gov't offices to ban the boxes
XBOX One will learn to play media from USB and DLNA sources
Hang on? Aren't those file formats you hardly ever see outside torrents?
Class war! Wikipedia's workers revolt again
Bourgeois paper-shufflers have 'suspended democracy', sniff unpaid proles
prev story

Whitepapers

Endpoint data privacy in the cloud is easier than you think
Innovations in encryption and storage resolve issues of data privacy and key requirements for companies to look for in a solution.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
Solving today's distributed Big Data backup challenges
Enable IT efficiency and allow a firm to access and reuse corporate information for competitive advantage, ultimately changing business outcomes.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.