The UK has aspirations to be one of the foremost knowledge economies in the world, attracting inward investment, international companies, and jobs at the top of the global value chain by supporting a thriving high technology culture.
Delivering our strategic goals of world class research, innovation and skills help us deliver this ambition. World class skills are one of the most important ways that we deliver impact. World-class research and innovation depend on the outstanding performance and contribution of UK researchers, technologists and engineers to create knowledge, exploit ideas, and build and operate large scale facilities.
It requires a distinct combination of skills to deliver world-class science and technology on this scale; building this skills base is one of STFC's unique contributions to the UK.
As with our other strategic goals, STFC has several roles in delivering skills impact, including the provision of skills through grant support to universities, subscriptions to international facilities and training at its own facilities. We also encourage collaboration by promoting cross institutional projects at our own laboratories, encouraging joint appointments, and establishing hubs of national expertise, such as the Cockcroft Institute at Daresbury Laboratory. We also develop and support our own highly technical workforce and our staff also hold many leading positions in global research efforts.
STFC research also inspires future generations to study STEM subjects. Research shows that the areas of physics that spark the most interest are those supported by STFC, and applications to university physics courses continue to rise. New discoveries attract strong public interest – an estimated 26 million people followed TV and radio coverage of CERN’s announcement of the discovery of a new Higgs-like particle.
STFC is also a focal point for the UK’s national capability in areas such as microelectronics, high performance computing, and in research techniques such as neutron and X-ray scattering.