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Consolidated List of Major Recommendations

References are to the relevant paragraphs in the report.

i. The SAC should be reconstituted as a leaner more agile body consisting of about six people including an external chair [25].

ii. Specific topics should be explored by time-limited, focussed working groups with most members apart from the chair recruited from outside the SAC [28].

iii. There should be a more formal mechanism for bringing items to the SAC agenda to ensure all aspects of Defra?s need for science and evidence are monitored on a rolling basis [31], though with flexibility to react to events.

iv. The SAC and CSA should meet once a year with representatives of the Devolved Administrations and Research Councils and part of SAC's remit should be to monitor links with these bodies and offer advice on how if at all they might be improved [35].

v. Many of the more routine reporting items on the SAC agenda should be either removed or treated as papers for information [36].

vi. The SAC should report to the Defra Board in addition to the CSA [37]

vii. The CSA's office should take action to articulate more clearly to all parts of Defra the role of the SAC and how it adds value to the Department's use of science and evidence [41].

viii. The SAC should provide challenge and scrutiny to the other bodies providing science advice to Defra [44].

ix. Incoming SAC members should receive greater training and induction [48].

x. Defra should consider paying SAC members an annual retainer rather than a per diem fee


xi. We suggest opportunities for economies in running SAC meetings [51].

xii. Once the future volume of SAC work and the landscape of other advisory bodies are clear,

the structure and staffing levels of the Secretariat should be re-examined [52].