Advising policy makers

Since its inception the Society has been a leader in supporting evidence informed decision making in government and beyond, and ‘influencing’ is one of the five priorities identified in the Society’s strategic plan for 2022 – 2027.

In practice this means that the Society actively works to ensure that decision making, political debate and parliamentary scrutiny are informed by timely and accessible scientific advice, and a rich evidence base.

We do this by identifying and engaging with the most influential policy actors across the UK’s nations and regions, developing quality assured products tailored to their priorities and building partnerships and alliances with sector colleagues wherever necessary. This includes building relationships with government ministers, parliamentarians, select committees and civil servants in all four UK administrations.

We aim to engage in a high-profile programme of activity to bring a greater awareness of the scientific solutions which are key to tackling huge global challenges, including climate change, biodiversity loss, an ageing population and the rapid advance of disruptive emerging technologies.

As well as making active contributions to debates relating to matters where science policy has an important perspective to offer, much of our influencing work focusses on policy for the science system itself. This involves helping to ensure that the UK has a healthy and internationally competitive research and innovation ecosystem in which science can thrive and benefits to humanity can flow. Key issues here include introducing longer-term investment frameworks into the science system, tackling barriers to international collaboration and researcher mobility, and ensuring that our population is equipped with the skillsets needed to adapt to the jobs and technological developments of the future.