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Infrastructure work is vital to improved productivity, ICE tells MPs

Civil engineering has a vital role to play in improving the UK’s productivity and must step up to the challenge, the ICE has told MPs.

The Institution’s response to the Commons Business Innovation and Skills select committee inquiry into the effectiveness of Government’s productivity plan, urges the government to maximise infrastructure’s contribution to productivity by ensuring investment choices are tied into a thorough, evidence-based assessment of future infrastructure needs. It also called for further action in schools to generate a pipeline of engineering talent.

But the ICE said the industry must also play its part by retraining its workforce to be redeployed across a range of projects; to embrace innovation; to make better use of technology and digitisation; and to find ways to deliver more with less.

It added that more investment in research and development - funded through new business models - could help to bring about innovation to support productivity growth.

Earlier this month the ICE launched an “Industry Transformation” campaign to support the industry’s efforts to become more agile, innovative and ready to embrace change and on top of new methods and processes.

It is also developing an academy to support the industry’s efforts to upskill its workforce. The ICE Academy will be a focal point for whole life learning, and for reenergising those who have taken career breaks by providing topical learning content in key areas.

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