Shelving UK’s ‘Silicon Valley’ could cost economy £50bn

A government decision to shelve a strategic plan to create a British rival to Silicon Valley connecting Oxford and Cambridge risks costing the UK economy £50bn, a research report has warned.

A group of more than 60 prominent members of the academic and investment communities is urging greater investment in the “Oxford-Cambridge Arc”, an innovation hub that has grown up around the UK’s two best-known universities.

Michael Anstey, Partner at CIC, said 

“The Arc needs government support — the aspiration to make this a global supercluster and a leading innovation geography will only work if there’s appropriate infrastructure in place, from funding, to transport, to housing,” he wrote. The levelling up department said it recognised “the importance of the Oxford Cambridge Arc as a globally renowned hub of innovation” and is due to publish the results of an October 2021 consultation on delivering an overarching planning framework for the project “in due course”.

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