UK begins consultation on national cyber-physical infrastructure

The UK government has initiated a consultation on the national cyber-physical infrastructure to ensure the UK’s position as digital superpower.

Today – Wednesday 2 March – the UK government has begun a consultation on a national cyber-physical infrastructure, which is an ecosystem of progressively associated digital and physical systems with the possibility of helping to facilitate innovation and safeguard the UK’s position as an innovation nation and a science world power.

Developing a cyber-physical infrastructure

Highly developed cyber-physical systems that sit between the digital and physical realms are becoming increasingly part of our lives, society, and economy.

The uses of these systems vary from autonomous farming drones and collaborative robots employed with factory operators, to decreasing overcrowding in our urban traffic systems and preparing emergency responses to severe weather events for our critical infrastructure.

The consultation investigates the prospects and difficulties that have occurred as a result of the progressively linked employment of these systems, and how ecosystems of this technology may assist UK innovators in lowering price and threat to rapidly develop, test and implement ideas.

Through this consultation, the government is pursuing opinions and insights from stakeholders such as, industry, academia, institutions, and the wider public sector.

Britain’s role in the global economy

Science Minister George Freeman explained: “The UK is emerging from the last few turbulent years with a more resilient and sustainable economic model – putting science, research and innovation at the heart of our post-Brexit vision for Global Britain’s role in the world.

“Increasingly, advanced and connected digital and physical technologies are providing us with new tools to help us better predict and respond to future global challenges; drive UK leadership in science and research; and better commercialise innovations.

“This consultation is a key step to realising these benefits for the UK, and I look forward to receiving guiding challenges and insights from the community.”

The consultation has been developed with the participation of more than 100 organisations backed by Digital Catapult. It expands the Robotics Growth Partnership’s recently issued independent Vision for cyber-physical infrastructure.

A national expertise in cyber-physical infrastructure would build upon and complement several other national strategies including the National Data Strategy, National Cyber Strategy 2022, the AI Strategy, Innovation Strategy, and the 10 Point Plan for a Green Industrial Revolution.

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