Maxwell (left) sitting next to Francis Maude (right) who is responsible for the consolidation of government IT services

National technology adviser appointed by UK government

Liam Maxwell has been appointed to the newly created role of national technology adviser by the UK government, building on his previous role as chief technology officer.

The role will see him expand the government’s relationships with the digital and technology industries in order to boost the UK’s digital economy.

The role will also progress the government’s work on emerging technologies, such as driverless cars, using experts from the industry who will be appointed to a new council that can provide recommendations.

The government says the new council will boost its expertise in the technology sector which will help to "attract investors and promote export opportunities".

Over the last four years, Maxwell has played a part in changing the way the government buys and uses technology. The introduction of the digital marketplace, which helps the public sector buy IT services from suppliers, recently reached £1bn in sales, the majority of which has gone to small businesses.

“Four years ago I was asked to come in to government and reshape the technology landscape,” Maxwell said. “To move from silos to common technology, to introduce the concept of common infrastructure and open standards, and to save money.

“We’ve injected a huge amount of talent into the tech leadership of government – the government is now one of the most exciting places to work in tech.

“We have the skills, the infrastructure and the know-how to make our economy the most connected, the most attractive and the most digital in the world. I’m excited to be a part of it.”

He is set to work closely with Matt Hancock, cabinet office minister and Ed Vaizey, digital economy minister on further developing the UK’s technology sector.

“With a digital sector contributing an estimated £118.3bn to the UK economy, the role of National Technology Adviser is vital in harnessing homegrown talent to expand our digital capability,” said Vaizey.

“As an ambassador for government, Liam will make sure we’re attracting the right investment and innovation to secure our position as a global leader.”

The 2016 Budget, which was laid out in March by chancellor of the exchequer George Osborne, made few specific concessions to the engineering and technology sectors.

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