The UK, as Europe, suffers a market failure in venture and angel capitalism. Companies that are developing exciting new products have to reduce their development efforts in favour of cash generating activities in order to survive. This creates an overall value add below potential. In the meantime, regional development agencies are busy pumping money into call centres and larger established companies that are not creating the high value add jobs that are needed.
If the government is serious about the growth of the overall economy, it must focus on fostering innovation and participate in the risks that R&D poses.
This ought not be through hand picking through the numerous schemes available, but through a process that gives advantages to SMEs break into markets dominated by large incombents.
Universities do not need to use the most established software to run their business, they can be encouraged to use newer alternatives generated by innovative local firms.
Students in engineering and scince should be encourage to use systems, tools and software being developed by local innovative firms. They act as customers, as well as testing and idea generating communities.