AN organisation bringing together science, technology, engineering and maths experts who support independence has been set up by a former No voter.

Craig Berry, 26, from Glasgow, launched the group STEM for Independence to persuade people working in the science and technology sector to back independence and vote Yes in any new referendum on the issue.

“Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) is the lifeblood of Scottish industry. Scotland has built up a vast knowledge base within STEM subjects and continues to lead the world within some areas.

“However, the UK economy relies too heavily on the South East and London as economic centres. Economic development focuses on advancing these regions at the expense of the other regions of the UK,” said electrical engineer, Berry.

READ MORE: From No to Yes: I campaigned for Better Together but this isn't what I wanted

He added: “With independence, Scotland and our universities will be in a stronger position, as a sovereign nation state, to invest in our STEM capacity, limited to the economic availability of investment.

“There are almost one million people in Scotland that work in STEM industries or occupations. We need a campaign which will not only speak to those people, but give them a voice.

“Other people within the UK may be fed up with experts, but Scotland isn’t.

"We have a wealth of experts in Scotland that are involved with the STEM community, academics who have built a long career in STEM, and we can begin to give these people a voice so that the independence movement is ready for the next referendum on Scottish independence.”

He added: “It is our belief that independence can offer Scotland a more equal and democratic society. Giving the STEM community the platform to help shape that society will ensure that we can change Scotland for the better.

The National: Craig Berry believes Scotland would do better economically outside of the UKCraig Berry believes Scotland would do better economically outside of the UK

"STEM for Independence will take that role on and ensure the STEM community can have a voice in the independence movement.”

Berry said he voted No in 2014, but had changed his mind gradually since then, coming to the view that Scotland lacked democratic power and influence within the UK.

It is now his firm belief that Scotland would do better economically if it became an independent nation.

READ MORE: No voters tell Progress Scotland why they have changed their minds

STEM for Independence has six signatories to date: Ivan McKee, the Scottish government minister for trade, investment and innovation; Dr Kirsty Ross, an outreach officer working in pure and applied chemistry; Dr Craig Dalzell, head of research and policy at think-tank Common Weal; Carol Monaghan, SNP MP for Glasgow North West; Lorna Slater, engineering project manager at Orbital Marine Power and operations co-convener at the Scottish Greens and Dr Keith Baker, a fuel poverty researcher at Glasgow Caledonian University.

Berry has written a number of reports for Common Weal, including articles on automation, democratising artificial intelligence and the need for public-funding to see Scotland’s space industry develop.

To coincide with the launch, a paper written by Berry highlighting the negative impact Brexit will have upon research funding in Scotland will be published.

It will warn that Scottish universities receive around 10% of their research income from the EU, totalling round £105m a year.

He urged people to come forward to help support the new organisation.

“With just a modest budget we can ensure we have the resources to effectively convince people within the STEM community that it is in their benefit to create an independent Scotland," he said.

More information on the group can be found at