Figures in the ONS statistical bulletin UK Gross Domestic Expenditure on Research and Development, 2011 show that R&D spending in the civil sector hit a high of £25.4 billion in 2011, accounting for 93 per cent of all UK R&D spending.
This constituted a 5 per cent annual rise in current prices from 2010, although defence R&D spending also increased in the same period by 3 per cent to £2 billion.
The overall rise in R&D spending was largely accounted for by the business sector. Adjusted for inflation, its spending rose by 6 per cent to £17.4 billion between 2010 and 2011 (higher education spending rose by just 0.2 per cent to £7.1 billion).
The £.4 billion spent on R&D in 2011 represented 1.79 per cent of UK national wealth, a slight increase from 1.77 per cent in 2010. However, this was still below the European Union average of 2.03 per cent.