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Government funds national data innovation centre in Newcastle

Matteo Natalucci Published 18 September 2017

£30m site aims to put UK at forefront of big data

Minister for Digital Matt Hancock has announced the funding of a National Innovation Centre for Data (NICD) to act as a ‘beacon’ for data innovation, linking up leading academics with industry and the public sector to help them develop digital skills using advances in data science.

The NICD, to be based in Newcastle, aims to accelerate innovation by delivering key technical and practical data skills into organisations, enabling them to improve their competitiveness and grow their business.

This is part of the government’s Digital Strategy which set out plans to boost the nation’s digital skills, infrastructure and innovation, including measures to support the UK’s world-leading artificial intelligence (AI) sector.

Speaking at Nesta’s Data Skills For The Future conference, Hancock said: “We’re determined to unlock the huge potential of big data which could add billions of pounds to our economy - from powering price comparison sites to improving the flow of transport around cities.

“Our new National Innovation Centre for Data will help us achieve this aim by making sure the skills and talent in our universities is being transferred into industry and the public sector. It will not only spark innovation among the next generation of tech experts but also help businesses across the whole country capitalise on the immense value of data.”

The £15m funding from government, which is managed through the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC), will be matched by £15m from Newcastle University and will also help supply the next generation of skilled and educated researchers.



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