Labour is pledging a share of the 1bn proceeds from the midweek National Lottery to innovation and design through its National Endowment of Sciences and the Arts.
If Labour wins today’s election, NESTA is planned as an independent charity to encourage people in the arts and sciences “to donate part of their talent [through contributing part of the value of their copyrights and patents] to an endowment fund which will foster new talent for the future”, says Labour leader Tony Blair.
Shadow Education and Employment Secretary David Blunkett unveiled the plans for NESTA, saying: “It will promote best practice in design and innovation by awarding prizes or bursaries.”
NESTA will consult with designers and colleges, says the endowment’s creator Rory Coonan. “I think it will give a real stimulus to design. NESTA brings scientists and artists together and design is at the point where science and art meet,” he adds.
Allocation of Lottery money to NESTA will be decided by the Lottery funding bodies, says Shadow National Heritage Secretary Jack Cunningham.