The UK is a world leader in medical research, with a vibrant research and innovation ecosystem in which public investment leverages significant charity and private investment.
However, we must not take this for granted. The Academy works to ensure sustained investment in research and innovation by demonstrating their societal and economic benefits - including supporting the new Industrial Strategy and ongoing activities around the future of the UK's research relationship with the European Union, which has significant implications for the UK funding landscape.
The Academy is actively engaged with major structural changes to the research funding architecture, as set out in the Higher Education and Research Bill. The Academy submitted evidence to the consultation on the Green Paper in January 2016, and will seek continued engagement as these plans develop.
The Academy welcomed the additional £2bn per year of public investment in research and innovation, announced in the Chancellor's Autumn Statement in 2016. This represents a step change in funding for the sector, and a strong message that research is at the heart of the UK's future. This news came shortly after the publication of a joint Academies statement - Open for Business - which called for Government to set UK research investment on a trajectory towards 3% of GDP, to keep pace with comparator nations.
Alongside our sister Academies, we co-hosted events at the 2016 Labour, Conservative and SNP party conferences, discussing the importance of maintaining the UK's as the destination of choice for research and innovation.
The Academy is supporting a new report, extending a series of evaluations of economic return from medical research. Working alongside Arthritis Research UK, Wellcome Trust, Medical Research Council and Department of Health, this new report will examine the return on research into musculoskeletal conditions.