Green industrial strategy


Driving growth is at the centre of the current political debate. The UK has long flatlined in productivity, wages and therefore GDP which has undermined our resilience and ability to deal with external shocks like the current energy price crisis.

Robust and long term growth is needed and can only come from action on climate and the environment. Research and innovation will be central to boosting productivity and reaching net zero.

Our innovation work takes the form of three projects. These projects look at how green innovation can help achieve economic and environmental goals, the role green skills can play in addressing regional inequalities and the importance of the Green Innovation Policy Commission’s recommendations.

Climate for growth

The economy is facing significant headwinds from low growth and high inflation. Productivity has stagnated leading to suppressed wages and progress is being held back by economic, political, and regulatory obstacles.  

The government has pledged to make the UK a ‘science superpower’ and to level up the nation as well as committing to climate and nature goals. Currently, these environmental goals are seen as strands of research and innovation. However, given the centrality of the transition to the future of our economy, and the reliance on innovation to deliver net zero and nature recovery they need to be far more central. 

In 2022, we highlighted the role of green research and innovation spending when it comes to achieving economic and levelling up objectives. By demonstrating the national and regional economic outcomes from green innovation projects across the UK we set out recommendations on cross-cutting green innovation policies including skills, business investment and digitalisation. 

Green skills

The UK faces acute skills shortages across the sectors it most urgently needs to decarbonise. Our study of the future needs of a greener economy finds that a targeted green skills programme would speed up action to both reach net zero and address regional inequalities. 

Green Innovation Policy Commission

The Green Innovation Policy Commission (GIPC) is a business-led consortium set up and supported by Green Alliance and University College London (UCL) – specifically the UCL Institute for Sustainable Resources and UCL Public Policy team. It brings together progressive businesses and leading academics to identify how policy can best support green innovation across the UK economy and reward the innovators, entrepreneurs and investors who generate value from the solutions to the global environmental challenges.

Over its two-year programme, the GIPC set out to:

  • Identify green innovation priorities across the UK economy, with a particular focus on hard-to-reach sectors, including road freight, buildings, heavy industry and food;
  • Inject new thinking on how policy can most effectively promote and support green innovation;
  • Create a new public dialogue between policymakers, academics, and business leaders on the challenges and opportunities around economic growth directed at green innovation.


Published in 2020, the GIPC’s final report detailed the results of its investigation, including sectoral analyses and advice to government and business.

We published a summary of the GIPC’s recommendations to policymakers.

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