University of Cambridge


The Centre for Science and Policy

CSaP annual conference 2013: Future directions for scientific advice in Whitehall

18 April 2013, The Royal Society

Continuing the theme of the Future Directions seminar series – how government can make more effective use of scientists and scientific advice in the context of Civil Service Reform – CSaP’s second annual conference will see leading speakers from government and academia explore the changing role of the analytical professions; how government can make better use of external academic expertise; and the nature of evidence in more open policy making.


Scientific advice has never been in greater demand; nor has it been more contested. From climate change to cyber-security, poverty to pandemics, food technologies to fracking, the questions being asked of experts by policy makers, the media and the public continue to multiply. At the same time, in the wake of the global financial crisis and controversies such as ‘Climategate’, the authority and legitimacy of experts is under greater scrutiny.

In the context of the UK Government’s Civil Service Reform agenda, and as Sir Mark Walport takes up the reins this month as the Government’s new Chief Scientific Adviser, this conference will launch a collection of essays charting future directions for scientific advice in Whitehall.

Confirmed speakers & chairs include:
  • Sir Bob Kerslake, Head of the Home Civil Service
  • Sir Mark Walport, Government Chief Scientific Adviser
  • Dr Robert Doubleday, Executive Director, Centre for Science and Policy
  • Professor Frank Kelly, Professor of the Mathematics of Systems, University of Cambridge
  • Professor Ian Boyd, Chief Scientific Adviser, Defra
  • Dr Claire Craig, Deputy Head, Government Office for Science
  • Professor James Wilsdon, Professor of Science & Democracy, SPRU
  • Dr Laura Haynes, Head of Policy Research, Behavioural Insights Team, Cabinet Office
  • Graham Pendlebury, Director Local Transport, Department for Transport
  • Professor Neville Jackson, Group Technology Director, Ricardo plc
  • Dr Tristram Riley-Smith, External Champion for the RCUK Global Uncertainties Programme
  • Professor Derek Smith, Professor of Infectious Disease Informatics, University of Cambridge
  • Mark Phillips, Policy Adviser for Secruity and Resilience, ADS Group
  • Andrea Lee, Deputy Director (Strategic Analysis), Department for Communities and Local Government
  • Philip Guildford, Director of Research, Engineering Department, University of Cambridge
  • Ricky Taylor, Senior Analyst, Department for Communities and Local Government
  • Halima Khan, Director, Public Services Laboratory, Nesta
  • Dr David Cleevely, Founding Director, Centre for Science and Policy
  • Jill Rutter, Director of Programmes, Institute for Government
  • Professor Theresa Marteau, Director of the Behaviour and Health Research Unit, Cambridge
  • 09:30 Arrival & Registration
  • 10:10 Welcome
  • 10:20 Keynote: Sir Mark Walport - "Scientific advice in government - the next five years"
  • 11:00 Session 1: Future directions for scientific advice in Whitehall
  • 12:45 Lunch & Poster Session
  • 13:45 Session 2: Working with academia (3 x parallel case study seminars)
  • 15:15 Tea
  • 16:00 Session 3:Panel discussion - experimental government
  • 17:00 Keynote: Sir Bob Kerslake - "How will Civil Service Reform improve the use of evidence by Government?"
  • 18:00 Drinks & networking
  • 19:00 Close

To download the full agenda, please click here.

Who should attend?

This conference has been designed for an audience of policy makers, academics, business leaders and early-career researchers who have an interest in the relationship between science and policy.

Cost of attending
  • Students and postdocs - £25
  • CSaP Fellows - £45
  • Government, academia and learned societies - £65
  • Industry - £95
  • Press/journalists - FREE

For a free place members of the Press should email


The annual conference is sponsored by BAE Systems, BP, Afton Chemical, Thomson Reuters, the Royal Society of Chemistry and Lloyds of London.

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Keynote Speakers