Innovation is crucial in steering the UK into economic recovery – but requires cultural change for it to be optimised, according to Sir Richard Needham, senior independent director of Dyson.

The ex-Minister of Trade spoke at a conference hosted by ANSYS,  provider of simulation-led product development.

He said innovation was the only way in which organisations could differentiate themselves from their competitors and warned that cost-containment initiatives could only extend so far. Focusing on reducing costs, at the expense of innovation, was destined to fail.

 He said true innovation needs collaboration across research & development, marketing, sales and operations to be successful.  Its absence would represent a greater barrier to innovation than government regulation.