UCL News


UCL Commission to find mission-oriented solutions to UK's Industrial Strategy

5 March 2018

A Commission, set up to explore how the UK can use its new Industrial Strategy launched in November 2017, to solve big economic and social challenges and help achieve investment led growth, will hold its first meeting this week.

MOISS logo

The UCL Commission for Mission Oriented Innovation and Industrial Strategy (MOIIS) was established by the Founder and Director of the UCL Institute for Innovation and Public Purpose (IIPP), Professor Mariana Mazzucato, and will be co-chaired with Lord David Willetts.

The Commission's purpose is to consider how the four 'Grand Challenges' set out in the UK Government's Industrial Strategy, can be transformed into concrete 'missions', that require different sectors to come together in tangible ways.

The four challenges are: Artificial intelligence and big data; clean growth; the future of mobility; and meeting the needs of an ageing society.

MOIIS will use the mission-oriented principles, devised by IIPP and recently published by the European Commission in a high impact report by Mazzucato on how to turn 'Grand Challenge' thinking into 'mission' thinking. Key to that approach is the need for 'missions' to provide a clear direction (targeted, measureable and time bound), while also fostering bottom-up exploration. 'Missions' should be chosen so that they require investments and innovation across different sectors (from digital, to transport, and health) and different types of actors (public, private and third sector) to solve societal goals.

Professor Mazzucato said: "Currently the UK continues to grow through consumption led growth, fuelled by private debt. A change in course requires growth driven by investment, innovation and increases in productivity.

"When industrial strategy is focussed on support to sectors or individual technologies, it is harder to achieve investment led growth because that support does not necessarily catalyse innovation.

"However, when industrial strategy is focussed on solutions to problems - such as going to the moon, to creating more sustainable cities, or better care solutions, this requires changes in investment behaviour and more dynamic collaborations between sectors.

"Our Commission will help guide that thinking, and also propose some concrete missions for the country to consider. For this purpose we have brought together a formidable team of people with cross-disciplinary thinking in areas as diverse as artificial intelligence, new transport systems, and 21st century care solutions."

The UCL Commission for Mission Oriented Innovation and Industrial Strategy (MOIIS) is driven by the thinking proposed in the first UCL Institute for Innovation and Public Purpose (IIPP) working paper: Mission-Oriented Innovation: Challenges and Opportunities, published in September 2017.

This research and thinking led to a new EC report on Mission-Oriented Research & Innovation in the EU: a problem-solving approach to fuel innovation-led growth, published in February 2018.

The first meeting of MOIIS is being attended by Greg Clark, Secretary of State for Business, and will take place at the Department of Business Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) in Westminster tomorrow (Tuesday March 6, 2018).

To find out more about MOIIS and to see a list of the Commissioners, go to: https://www.ucl.ac.uk/bartlett/public-purpose/moiis


Commission for Mission Oriented Innovation and Industrial Strategy

Professor Mariana Mazzucato 


Source UCL 

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Email: h.killworth [at] ucl.ac.uk