Independent report: Operational Safety (OSART) mission to Sizewell B nuclear power station: follow-up report

This is the UK government response to the report written by the IAEA, and the full IAEA Operational Safety Review Team (OSART) report which includes operational safety recommendations and highlights good practices found at Sizewell B to be considered by the relevant UK authorities, EDF Energy and Sizewell B.

This was a follow-up to a mission in October 2015.

Independent report: Electronic balloting for industrial action: Knight review

This independent review looks at the electronic and physical security of electronic balloting (e-balloting) for industrial action. The report sets out recommendations and suggests a test phase of e-balloting in non-statutory contexts.

See the related call for evidence.

The government will consider Sir Ken’s recommendations and will consult with experts from relevant organizations before responding.

Independent report: Heat Networks Consumer Survey: consumer experiences on heat networks and other heating systems

The Heat Networks Consumer Survey is a BEIS research project into the experiences of consumers on heat networks.

Heat networks are a distribution system of insulated pipes that take heat from a central source and deliver it to a variety of different customers such as public sector buildings, shops and offices, sport facilities, universities and homes.

Heat networks will need to play a key role in the long term decarbonisation of heating, as they provide a unique opportunity to exploit larger scale - and often lower cost - renewable and recovered heat sources that otherwise cannot be used.

The survey was sent via post to consumers between April and July and received over 3,700 responses from heat network consumers and nearly 1,800 responses from consumers not on heat networks to act as a comparison. The report sets out the findings from the survey and covers a range of topics, including satisfaction with system performance, price and transparency of billing, and consumer service.

Independent report: Leveraging public procurement to grow the innovation economy: an independent review of the Small Business Research Initiative (SBRI)

This independent review by David Connell examines how government can maximise the impact of the Small Business Research Initiative (SBRI):

  • by improving procurement outcomes for government
  • by supporting and stimulating innovation by Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs), boosting the UK’s innovative capability
  • and by supporting the development and commercialisation of new technology-based products and services in the UK.

The accompanying documents set out the evidence and data that BEIS provided to support the independent review, along with annexes providing a literature review, case studies and SBRI usage statistics.

As part of the independent review of SBRI, government held an online consultation seeking views on how SBRI can be improved to help more small businesses turn their innovative ideas into technology-based products.

Independent report: Evaluation of ATI Aerospace R&D Programme – process and implementation review

Updated: Figure 3.2 corrected.

Ipsos MORI have undertaken an independent review of the processes involved in awarding R&D grants to the UK aerospace industry. This is jointly managed by BEIS, the Aerospace Technology Institute (ATI) and InnovateUK (IUK). In addition to consultations with the three government bodies, these also included private sector aerospace companies and research organisations in receipt of existing or recent ATI grants.

A number of recommendations have been made in the report for improving the processes. These are being reviewed by BEIS, ATI and IUK. To date, two working parties have been established by the three parties, which includes consultations with the private sector, to specifically address the following issues:

  • Application, Assessment and Contracting: with a prime objective of improving the efficiency of the application process and to reduce the time taken to award grants;
  • Monitoring, Exploitation and Evaluation: to ensure data collected is essential, avoids duplication and, where possible, reduces the burden on companies.

Independent report: HM Government response to the ICAI rapid review of GCRF

BEIS welcomes the ICAI rapid review of the Global Challenges Research Fund (GCRF). We are pleased ICAI has acknowledged the role of the GCRF in helping to address pressing global development challenges. The UK played a leading role in defining the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and is firmly committed to working in partnership to implement them.

We recognise some of the challenges ICAI has identified and will work actively on the issues identified in the report with our delivery partners and across government.

Independent report: Made Smarter Review

Updated: Text within the Detail of the page simplified

This independent review of industrial digitalisation - Made Smarter - was led by Professor Juergen Maier, CEO Siemens UK.

The Made Smarter (previously Industrial Digitalisation) Review sets out how UK manufacturing can be transformed through the adoption of industrial digital technology (IDT). Over 10 years industrial digitalisation could boost UK manufacturing by £455bn, increasing sector growth up to 3% per year, and creating a net gain of 175,000 jobs whilst reducing CO2 emissions by 4.5%.

The Review focuses on three priority areas informed by understanding of the three main challenges business face. They are:

  • Leadership: more ambitious, informed and focused leadership
  • Adoption: more widespread adoption of IDTs across supply chains, especially within SMEs
  • Innovation: faster innovation and creation of new IDTs, new IDT companies / value-streams and new capabilities to sustain UK competitive advantage.

Professor Juergen Maier was commissioned by government to put forward proposals for an Industrial Digitalisation sector deal in the Industrial Strategy green paper.

Independent report: Cost of energy: independent review

Updated: Independent review by Dieter Helm in to the cost of energy.

Professor Dieter Helm CBE was asked by the Government as part of the Industrial Strategy Green Paper in August to consider the whole electricity supply chain of generation, transmission, distribution and supply. Professor Helm has looked at how the energy industry, Government and regulators can continue to deliver secure, affordable power, while ensuring the UK meets its domestic and international climate targets.

We will shortly be seeking the views of industry, businesses, academics and consumer groups on Professor Helm’s review.

Read the press announcement about the review