Construction center launched in Scotland

Updated: 2014-10-08 09:10


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EDINBURGH - The new Construction Scotland Innovation Center was launched on Tuesday in Glasgow to become the engine behind business innovation growth and a leading center for construction expertise.

The center will provide the 31,000-plus businesses involved in the sector with a one-stop shop for accessing a team of academic experts and public support.

Supported by the Scottish Funding Council with a total funding package of 9.3 million pounds (about 15 million US dollars) with additional financial support from the private sector, the center is being delivered in partnership with Scottish Enterprise, Highlands and Islands Enterprise and 11 Scottish universities.

Launching the new center at Construction Scotland Annual Conference in Scotland's largest city, Scottish Deputy First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said: "Innovation Centers are about developing the best environment for businesses and academia to interact, taking innovative ambitious projects of excellence that have the potential to bring millions more to the economy and create thousands of jobs."

"The construction industry underpins all of Scotland's key sectors and therefore underpins the success of our whole economy. Working together we can create the best environment for our businesses to thrive in partnership with academia to achieve our goals and aspirations for the sector," she added.

For his part, Chair of Construction Scotland Ed Monaghan said: "The Innovation Center will be instrumental in placing Scotland firmly on the map."

He stressed the role of the Innovation Center to transform innovative culture in Scotland's higher education and industry, and "ensure innovation becomes business-as-usual, creating a sector that is sustainable and one that generates greater economic impact for Scotland."

Scotland's construction industry employs around 170,000 people and is worth about 10 billion pounds to its economy, roughly 10 percent of Scotland's gross domestic product (GDP).

(1 pound = 1. 60 US dollars)