Digital Innovation Report: Everything You Need to Know
Just in time for the launch of the UK Business and Innovation Awards, the government has released a report on the future of digital innovation - specifically, the regulation required to maximise the potential of the UK's tech sector.
The report rightly identifies digital technologies as "the engine driving the UK’s economic growth."
However, with the digital revolution gathering pace, it's crucial for regulation to strike a balance between promoting innovation and safeguarding our fundamental rights and freedoms.
As the report puts it, "where necessary to intervene, government must: (i) actively promote innovation; (ii) achieve forward-looking and coherent outcomes; and (iii) address international opportunities and challenges."
A key element of this is ensuring that digital markets remain competitive. With tech titans growing ever more powerful, the government is keen to ensure they don't abuse their increasingly monopolistic positions. And so they've announced the creation of a Digital Markets Unit, "equipped for proactive oversight and swift action on competition issues, helping prevent future bad outcomes before they occur."
There's also the upcoming Online Safety Bill, to be debated in parliament later this year. The proposed law will "enshrine in law a duty of care on online companies to keep their users safe. It will defend freedom of expression and the invaluable role of a free press, while building trust and confidence and promoting innovation within the digital economy."
In a time when cybersecurity concerns are growing, this is important news. As the report states, UK innovation is already being stymied by rising levels of cybercrime: 39% of businesses and 26% of charities report having cybersecurity breaches or attacks in the last 12 months, as a result of which one in five lost money, data or other assets.
Enabling genuine competition in the market and ensuring that users are safe online will lay the foundations for future innovation and growth in the UK's tech sector. The hope is that these reforms will give the private sector the secure space it needs to innovate, create jobs, and spur on future economic growth.
Other highlights from the report include:
- A renewed commitment to international co-operation on tech issues, such as hosting a Future Tech Forum this autumn alongside other democratic nations
- A new science and technology partnership with the United States, as well as future agreements with India and Singapore
- A Digital Regulation Cooperation Forum, bringing together different regulatory agencies in the UK and developing a joined-up approach
If your organisation has been driving the UK economy forward through innovation, these awards are perfect place to share your story! Enter before September 17 to get some fantastic discounts - including one free entry for micro-businesses and start-ups!