News Update From The Royal Society Of Biology- 29 June 2016

Science Policy Newsletter – a weekly round-up of policy headlines and stories- 29 June 2016


Royal Society of biology News

Jo Johnson: science and innovation ‘will endure’ in UK
Science and universities minister Jo Johnson has addressed the science community just days after the UK voted to leave the European Union.

Jo Johnson: ‘minimise damage’, ‘maximise opportunities’ from Brexit
Minister backs continued UK success in EU’s Horizon 2020 and pledges to press ahead with HE bill.

British Science “Still Open For Business” Despite Brexit Vote, Politicians Insist
Senior Tory politicians have moved to reassure the scientific community “shocked” by last week’s EU referendum result.

World class science ‘will endure’ in UK after Brexit

UK science must be protected in wake of EU Referendum
Today’s Referendum outcome will result in the UK leaving the European Union. There will now be a period of uncertainty in many areas of UK policy, including bioscience research and practice, and its funding, until new decisions are made or existing arrangements confirmed.

RSB blogs

Plant IP – how the sands are shifting

EU referendum

Official seeks to reassure scientists on Brexit crisis
A representative of the European Commission has said that British researchers should not be concerned about their immediate future inside Horizon 2020, after last week’s Brexit vote.

UK scientists in limbo after Brexit shock
Researchers organize to lobby for science as country prepares for life outside the EU.

Researchers reeling as UK votes to leave EU
Future of science uncertain after referendum result.

How scientists reacted to the Brexit
Researchers respond to the UK’s momentous decision to leave the EU.

Brexit big blow to UK science, say top British scientists
Leave vote sparks concerns over losing £1bn a year in funding and closing doors on researchers from EU countries

How can we make Brexit work for the environment?
Leaving the EU puts about 70% of UK environmental safeguards at risk. But Brexit is not a mandate to make us the dirty man of Europe again – we have to make it work for the environment, from the grassroots up.

EU referendum: UK science wakes up to new future

Time to speak up
Science will need to find a strong voice if it is to be heard amid the tumult to come, says Sarah Main.

Life after Brexit: what next for British universities?
Europe’s higher education sector must not be pushed apart by the result of the EU referendum, says Keith Burnett.

Brexit, science and public involvement
As the scientific community reels from the referendum result and its possible consequences, it may seem strange to focus on public involvement, which is so often an afterthought in science policy circles.

Responses to the EU referendum result

Biochemical Society
British Ecological Society
British Pharmacological Society
British Society for Immunology
Campaign for Science and Engineering
First Minister of Scotland
First Minister of Wales
Physiological Society
The Royal Society

Health and biomedicine

First CRISPR clinical trial gets green light from US panel
The technique’s first test in people could begin as early as the end of the year.

China’s bid to be a DNA superpower
First China conquered DNA sequencing. Now it wants to dominate precision medicine too.

Food and drink

Scientists hungry to deliver food system paradigm shift

Food waste – what can we do about it?
Wherever you are in the world, if you are running or participating in food waste projects we’d like to hear from you.

Environment and ecology

The importance of perception
Perception is a powerful thing. At Natural England, we have a responsibility to make sure that our most special wildlife and geological areas – known as Sites of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI’s) – are being protected.

Unilever and L’Oreal questioned on microplastics environmental impact
Environmental Audit Committee questions businesses on key microbead issues including the public awareness, voluntary commitments to phase-out and consequences to microplastic pollution in the marine environment.

University policy and research funding policy

HE bill ‘will face substantial opposition in Parliament’
Meanwhile government says fees could be a maximum of nearly £12,000 by 2025-26 under TEF rises with inflation.

Funding reproducible, robust research
To help improve the reproducibility and reliability of research, and in response to feedback from the community, the MRC has updated the grant application process to allow applicants to include more detail on their methodology and experimental design.

Mock TEF results revealed: a new hierarchy emerges

Open access and publication policy

The ups and downs of data sharing in science
Pooling clinical details helps doctors to diagnose rare diseases — but more sharing is needed.

Business and industry

Biotech seed investing – funding proof of principle data
The BIA recently published a report, Money, Momentum and Maturity, with Evaluate and the London Stock Exchange, which indicated a drop in reported seed funding in the sector in 2015. On the blog today [28 June], BIA member Midven take a look at biotech seed investment and the important role it plays in the ecosystem.

Equality and diversity

Global Research Council: Commit to equity for women researchers
Heads of research agencies from nearly 50 countries — large and small, with developed and emerging economies — adopted a Statement of Principles and Actions Promoting the Equality and Status of Women in Research at the Global Research Council’s fifth annual meeting last month in New Delhi.


Netherlands to survey every researcher on misconduct
Dutch push to tackle fraud and ‘reproducibility crisis’ follows high-profile misconduct cases in the country.

Don’t just stand there, do something! Exploring endorsement and (non)adherence to CONSORT
The CONSORT guidelines outline the minimum reporting items that should be included for the complete and transparent reporting of randomized controlled trials.


Secretary of State appoints Maria Adebowale-Schwarte to Environment Agency Board
Urban renewal expert appointed to the Board of the Environment Agency as natural environment lead.


Science Policy Officer at the Royal Society of Biology
Apply by 15 July

Science Policy Manager at the Royal Society of Biology
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Appointments to the Research Councils 2016


The New Context: Transition from Schools into Higher Education
8 July, Birmingham
The Royal Society of Biology Curriculum Committee are working together to support the development of the school biology curriculum. Their first event for teachers and lecturers in schools, further education and higher education focuses on the transition between schools and universities.

People, Politics and the Planet: Any Questions?
21 July, London
Join the Sibthorp Trust, the British Ecological Society and the Royal Geographical Society (with IBG) for the first opportunity to debate the future of UK environmental policy in the aftermath of the EU referendum. This event is organised with support from the Society for the Environment and the Wellcome Trust.

And finally…

New app to record full range of UK wildlife 
The new iRecord App is available now, enabling users to get involved with the biological recording of all UK species. Now you can record all the wildlife you see and contribute to scientific research and conservation.

Royal Society of Biology
Science Policy Team
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Please note that any views or opinions presented in this email are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of the Royal Society of Biology.

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