Government Science Capability Review

A Review which addresses the capability of government science and engineering, recommending actions to further embed government science into policymaking.



Science is a cornerstone of our future economy and will impact increasingly upon every part of government and society. The Government Chief Scientific Adviser carried out this review to assess our current science and engineering capability. The recommendations encompass several key messages:

  • Whilst there are pockets of excellence, science activity and expenditure is variable across government – with reduced science budgets in many departments.
  • To improve the impact of our science, it is necessary to work across government and the wider scientific community in academia and industry, both in the UK and internationally.
  • In our public laboratories, we have an extraordinarily valuable asset, and we need to do more to nurture them.
  • New models for working with private sector innovative companies will be required to meet the science needs of government.
  • The government science and engineering profession, analysts and policy professionals will need to be part of defining the problems to be addressed by science and using science to improve performance and outcomes.
Published 5 November 2019