Tomorrow we're going to fing out more about how the new Regional Growth Fund is going to be spent when the government publishes a new white paper. It will have important consequences for universities and the aspiration to rebalance the UK economy towards manufacturing and the regions. And there are some important questions we need answered.
Until this year, the RDAs were spending £300m-£400m a year on high-tech activity. It was about 50:50 capital and projects. Much of it was partnering stuff with the Technology Strategy Board.
So here's the questions that we need the Department of Business Innovation and Skills to answer.
Q1. How much of the RGF will be spent on hi-tech activity? (eg specifically, in partnership with the TSB?)
Q2. How much of a contribution is the RGF making to the £200m budgeted for the Technology and Innovation Centres announced by Cameron earlier this week?
Q3. On a national basis, most TICs would be located in the South and East due to the existing hi-tech networks there. Will ministers let that happen?