Animal and plant health in the UK: science capability report published

19th Jan 2015

The Government's chief scientific adviser, Sir Mark Walport and Prof Ian Boyd (Defra) have undertaken a study to determine the UK's future needs for science capability to underpin animal and plant health during the next 10-15 years. The study was guided by a Steering Group of representatives from UK Government, the Devolved Administrations, Research Councils and experts from industry and academia. It involved a programme of interviews and workshops with a wide range of experts from across the animal and plant health landscape.

Diseases in animals and plants can have significant impacts on the economy, the environment and society. UK science capability to predict, detect and respond to these diseases is strong; however, it can be made more effective and efficient through a strengthened partnership across UK Government, the Devolved Administrations, academia and industry.

The report makes two main recommendations:

1: Establish a new ‘UK Science Partnership for Animal and Plant Health'. This new science partnership will set the overarching strategic direction and priorities for animal and plant health science and encourage an improved culture of coordination, collaboration and sharing of good practice.

2: To deliver rapid progress, the project Steering Group should become an interim Implementation Group to drive forward immediate work on priority actions as the first step in progress towards a new UK Science Partnership for Animal and Plant Health.

The study has already created a programme of activity around these priority actions, including work to develop a UK level strategy for animal and plant health science. Over the coming months, the Implementation Group, chaired by Sir Mark Walport, will continue to work with experts from across the animal and plant health landscape to help deliver these priority actions.

The report ‘Animal and Plant Health in the UK: Building our science capability' is available at: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/animal-and-plant-health-in-the-uk-building-our-science-capability

 

Source article: http://confor.org.uk/NewsAndEvents/Default.aspx?pid=1539

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