Science and medicine viewed as Britain's most valuable export – survey

The poll found that 80% of people believe it is important for UK security to invest in global disease prevention.

Science and medicine are considered Britain’s most valuable export, according to the results of a survey.

The pandemic put science to the test, and it appears British-led efforts have inspired people and given them a sense of pride.

Aside from the role the University of Oxford and the NHS have played in developing Covid-19 vaccines and treatments, British-led science has contributed much more to the world in recent years.

A new report by Malaria No More UK, called Best Of British – How British-Backed Science Can Accelerate The End Of Malaria, shows how British-backed science and research is helping to transform the fight against malaria.

This includes the development of vaccines, next-generation insecticide nets, genetically modified mosquitoes, and modelling the impact of different climate scenarios on populations at risk of malaria.

In a YouGov poll of 1,635 adults conducted between September 15 and 16 this year, 54% of those surveyed viewed science and medicine as Britain’s most valuable contribution to the world stage.

This was over art and culture (6%), sport and leisure (5%), and manufacturing and engineering (11%).

Of those surveyed, 80% believe it is important for UK security to invest in global disease prevention.

Malaria No More UK is calling for a renewed ambitious financial commitment to ending malaria, including through research, science and innovation.

Gareth Jenkins, director of advocacy at Malaria No More UK, said: “British-led science is playing such a critical role in the fight against Covid-19.

“These polling results show the British public want to see the country build on this momentum to end those diseases that have been around for centuries – like malaria – once and for all.”

Professor Azra Ghani, infectious disease epidemiologist at Imperial College London, said: “Britain has a proud heritage in helping to tackle one of the world’s oldest diseases through its scientific contributions.

“Now more than ever we need to maintain our investment in this global fight to create a safer world for us all, and work with partners so that the right solutions reach those who need them the most.”

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