We identify opportunities for the alignment and development of UK marine science to inform policy decisions and forward implementation of the UK Marine Science Strategy.
Role and priorities
The Marine Science Co-ordination Committee (MSCC) is a cross-government committee which aims to coordinate scientific knowledge, resources and communications to support marine policy decisions.
The MSCC has developed a road map to help deliver and co-ordinate marine science in order to achieve the UK vision for ‘clean, healthy, safe, productive and biologically diverse oceans and seas’. This will replace the UK Marine Science Strategy.
The road map is due to be published before the end of 2020. In the meantime, the MSCC has published a summary of the road map. The working groups and partnership initiatives are already working towards meeting the nine high level road map priorities.
The MSCC International Working Group established the UK National Decade Committee for the UN Decade of Ocean Science for Sustainable Development (UNDOS) to help co-ordinate the UK’s activities and contributions and convey them to the UNDOS.
Membership and structure
The MSCC Co-Chairs are Prof Colin Moffat (Marine Scotland) and Dr Simon Brockington (Defra). Current members are senior representatives of government departments which fund marine science, devolved administrations and the main bodies which fund, provide and use marine science:
- Agri-Food and Biosciences Institute (AFBI)
- Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS)
- Centre for Environment, Fisheries and Aquaculture Science (Cefas)
- Department of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs (DAERA-NI)
- Department of Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra)
- Department for International Development (DfID)
- Department for Transport (DfT)
- Environment Agency (EA)
- Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO)
- Joint Nature Conservation Committee (JNCC)
- Marine Management Organisation (MMO)
- Marine Scotland
- Met Office
- Ministry of Defence (MOD)
- Natural Resources Wales
- National Oceanography Centre (NOC)
- Plymouth Marine Laboratory (PML)
- Marine Alliance for Science and Technology for Scotland (MASTS)
- Marine Biological Association (MBA)
- Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA)
- United Kingdom Hydrographic Office (UKHO)
- United Kingdom Research and Innovation (UKRI)
- Welsh Government
Alongside these members, the Chairs of the MSCC sub-groups (partnership initiatives and working groups) also attend the plenaries.
Marine Climate Change Impacts Partnership (MCCIP) provides advice on climate change impacts and the resulting adaptations required around the coast and seas
Marine Environmental Data and Information Network (MEDIN) is an open and collaborative partnership, working together to increase access to and stewardship of the UK’s marine data
UK Integrated Marine Observing Network (UK-IMON) is a group working towards ensuring a sustainable, resilient and fit-for-purpose ocean observing system around the UK regional seas
Underwater Sound Forum (USF) is a place where the UK marine and maritime community come together to discuss how the UK manages the issue of underwater sound in science, technology, policy and legal areas.
Communications Working Group provides communication expertise to the MSCC and sub-groups
International Working Group (IWG) provides advice, guidance and involvement relating to international marine science and policy engagement. It is also the National Decade Committee for the UN Decade
Marine Assessment and Reporting Group co-ordinates four evidence groups working towards to the UK Marine Monitoring and Assessment Strategy (UKMMAS) including delivering on the Marine Strategy (parts one, two and three and the OSPAR Quality Status Report 2023.
Marine Industries Group provides advice to the MSCC on matters relating to the marine industry sector, including fisheries, renewables, oil and gas and shipping
Research Vessel Working Group oversees the strategic co-ordination of the UK’s fleet of seven large (more than 50 m) public sector research vessels owned and operated by UKRI, academic institutes and government across the devolved administrations
Social Science Task Group strongly focus on the improved recognition and inclusion of social science and social indicators into the UK Marine Strategy
From 2021 the MSCC will sit four times a year. The Spring and Autumn plenaries are thematic sessions on current and emerging marine issues. The Summer and Winter plenaries are for the subgroups to report and present their full activities. Members of the MSCC are invited to attend all meetings.
The next meeting will be:
- 28 September 2020 (theme: statement on ocean and climate change)
- January 2020 (sub-group presentations)
Please contact the MSCC Secretariat for minutes from older meetings.
- Marine Climate Change Impacts (MCCIP) report card 2020
- social science report on UK Marine Social Science research and practice
Please contact the secretariat for any questions regarding the MSCC or any of the sub-groups.
International and Strategic Partnerships Office,
National Oceanography Centre,
- email: email@example.com
- telephone: 023 8059 6789