Scotland to the fore as UK reawakens to manufacturing

The penny has dropped: manufacturing should be at the heart of the UK economy, says Professor Sir Jim McDonald, principal and vice-chancellor of the University of Strathclyde.

“We’re seeing the challenges of not having a strong manufacturing and supply chain capability in the UK, through the vaccine program and that’s why the UK vaccine task force was set up,” he explained.

However, McDonald said that manufacturing is alive and well in Glasgow and across Scotland. In particular, there are two major international-scale innovation districts in Glasgow and Renfrewshire, near Glasgow airport.

“The innovation district concept has been around for decades,” he said. “What we’re seeing here and around Glasgow is a realisation of the proposition where we bring great talent and great infrastructure, great research and innovation capability, but very importantly, the creation of clusters with OEMs and supply-chain partners.”

He added that this is underpinned by innovation support from the UK and Scottish governments and  from local authorities to create these innovation districts.

Click on the video to watch the full interview or listen to the podcast below.