Today, 23 September 2021, in a joint venture between the British Embassy Santiago, the Science and Innovation Network and the Science & Government Department of the Chilean Science Ministry, we launched the report ‘Science Advice in the UK’.
This report examines the science advice system in the UK. It is a well-established and well regarded system, which derives its strength from its ongoing evolution – often in response to crises. The report was commissioned by the British Embassy in Santiago, as part of the work of the Science and Innovation Network, which jointly sits in the UK Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) and in the department of Business Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS).
The report aims to inform other governments about the evolution and function of science advice in the UK, illustrating how structures and processes have been developed and embedded, highlighting key strengths and attributes, as well as articulating where the tensions and challenges lie. More broadly, it aims to stimulate reflection and dialogue amongst those working in research and policy – and at their intersection – on what has been learnt in the UK so far. The report draws on insights from current and former scientific advisers, civil servants, evidence ‘brokers’ and intermediaries, and academics.
This report, that summarise 70 years of UK’ experience on science advice to the Government & Parliament, has been structured to answer the main questions that can rise when developing a science-advice system in government. Therefore, it hopes to be a useful resource for any other country seeking to stablish a similar system.