Science Board

Science Board is the Science and Technology Facilities Council’s (STFC) principal scientific advisory committee. It reports directly to the STFC Council.

Its purpose is to provide STFC with a strategic scientific overview and assessment of, and science advice on, all of the programmes STFC supports. It is supported by advisory panels, peer review committees and other advisory committees.

Terms of reference

To provide the STFC with a strategic scientific overview and assessment of, and science advice on, all of the programmes STFC supports.

The Science Board:

  • formulates and updates long term science and technology strategies for STFC. This includes identifying and prioritising scientific opportunities and understanding the technological and resource needs
  • reviews STFC science and technology programmes and investments, assessing their recent and predicted scientific productivity against agreed and publicised criteria
  • consults with the appropriate communities via its advisory panels to ensure the science and technology strategies remain the most viable for the UK
  • agrees and recommends a detailed STFC scientific investment plan against a budget set by the Council using published criteria and taking into account the agreed programme priorities, the long term science strategy and strategic reviews of STFC’s programmes
  • provides advice to Council on criteria for selecting projects and areas of science based on their scientific quality alongside other impacts, including economic impact and societal impact (outreach)
  • provides strategic scientific advice, as required, on STFC’s non-scientific programmes, including STFC’s campuses and innovation programmes
  • provides strategic scientific advice, as required, on the programmes of the UK Space Agency (UKSA) as part of the ‘dual key’ arrangements
  • monitors and reviews the operations of, and provides strategic advice and guidance to, peer-review panels.

Science Board may form expert sub-groups and delegate tasks when it is appropriate to do so. It is recognised that Science Board may require access to a wider breadth of knowledge and the mechanism for this is through a college of ‘non-core’ Science Board experts.

Science Board provides independent advice to STFC Council, making recommendations on scientific strategy. In this context it may engage in external reviews. However, any such engagement must have due regard to the impact on STFC, and STFC Council should be consulted as to the nature of the external engagement and approval obtained from the Chair of STFC Council as appropriate.

Science Board will ensure that its business is conducted in accordance with the STFC Ethics Policy, and have regard to any ethical principles set by the ethics committee and endorsed by STFC Council.

The above terms of reference will be reviewed annually.

Science Board meetings

21 to 22 February 2023

Statement of interest deadline: 23 January 2023

Meeting papers deadline: 27 January 2023

10 to 11 May 2023

Statement of interest deadline: 11 April 2023

Meeting papers deadline: 14 April 2023

4 and 6 July 2023

Statement of interest deadline: 5 June 2023

Meeting papers deadline: 9 June 2023

24 to 25 October 2023

Statement of interest deadline: 25 September 2023

Meeting papers deadline: 29 September 2023

Statement of Interest for new projects

View the guidance on the application process for Statement of Interest for new projects.

News from Science Board

View the latest news from Science Board.

Core members

Strategic reports

Committees reporting to Science Board

The committees reporting to Science Board are:


For more information about Science Board contact:

Rachel Leader


Last updated: 13 January 2023

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