Influencing policy

Science policy affects a broad range of issues, ranging from data sharing and gene editing, to intellectual property and regulation.

Our work

Patient data in research

Patient data is extremely valuable for biomedical and healthcare research.

Government investment in research

Government investment plays an important part in supporting scientific excellence in the UK.

Data sharing in public health emergencies

Research is an essential part of being ready for and responding to public health emergencies.

Research practice

Good research practice is one of the foundations of high-quality research.

Accelerated Access Review

The recommendations set out in the review mark one of the first steps towards making sure that promising drugs, devices, diagnostics and digital products are adopted quickly across the NHS.

EU medical devices regulations

The European Union is revising regulations governing the manufacture and sale of medical devices.

Gene editing in research

Gene editing allows scientists to change gene sequences by adding, replacing or removing sections of DNA.

Clinical trials data sharing

Sharing data from clinical trials benefits other researchers working on different studies and builds public trust by showing that clinical trials are valuable to healthcare.

Data Protection Regulation

The new European Data Protection Regulation was agreed in April 2016 and will take effect from May 2018.

Open access publishing

Open access ensures that original research publications – including journal articles, book chapters and monographs – are available to everyone to read and re-use at no cost.

EU copyright law reform

The European Commission is developing plans to update EU copyright law so that it applies equally across Europe and is fit for purpose in the 21st century.

Research involving animals

Almost every major breakthrough in human and veterinary medicine has depended on the use of animals in the research, development or testing of new therapies. 

Mitochondrial donation

Mitochondrial donation is an IVF technique that gives families affected by mitochondrial disease the chance of having healthy children.

Expert Advisory Group on Data Access

The Expert Advisory Group on Data Access provides strategic advice to its funders about the scientific, legal and ethical issues of data access for cohort studies and human genetics research.

Public Health Research Data Forum

The Public Health Research Data Forum brings together more than 20 funders of global health research to support ways of sharing health research data.


Evidence for action on antimicrobial resistance [PDF 3.1MB]

  • September 2016

We propose concrete interventions to combat the real and growing threat of antimicrobial resistance.

Public attitudes to commercial access to health data [PDF 2.8MB]

  • March 2016

We commissioned Ipsos MORI to undertake research into public attitudes towards commercial organisations accessing health, medical and genetic data.

Factors affecting public engagement by researchers [PDF 1.5MB]

  • December 2015

A national survey, on behalf of a consortium of UK public research funders, into the factors that affect public engagement by researchers across the UK.

More reports

Briefings and responses

Consultation on the second Research Excellence Framework [PDF 292KB]

  • March 2017

Higher Education Funding Council for England

Joint response to the inquiry into genomics and genome-editing [PDF 287KB]

  • January 2017

House of Commons Science and Technology Committee

Data governance [PDF 327KB]

  • November 2016

Royal Society/British Academy

More briefings and responses