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R&D tax credits ‘should include humanities and social sciences’

Study suggests UK government is not acknowledging the full definition of R&D

The government risks ignoring the full value of R&D by excluding arts, humanities and social sciences from the scope of R&D tax credits, two senior research figures have argued.

The popular form of tax relief works by reducing innovative businesses’ liability to corporation tax, or through making a direct payment to a company. In the 2020-21 tax year alone, firms claimed an estimated £6.6 billion, corresponding to £38.1bn of R&D expenditure.

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