New NERC Advisory Network

20 February 2019

NERC is adapting its governance and advisory structures to provide increased agility and broader expertise in light of new opportunities within UK Research and Innovation (UKRI).

From September 2019, a new NERC Advisory Network (NAN) will provide a retained, agile and flexible pool of expertise that can be drawn on for strategic or policy advice on specific issues.

Made up of 60 members with expertise across NERC's wide remit, the network will meet in groups when the NERC Executive, Council or Science Committee require advice on specific issues, as well meeting as a whole once per year.

As part of these changes, the existing Science Board will become the Science Committee. The committee will retain a role in governing funding for NERC's highlight topics. On top of this, the committee will consider, challenge and advise NERC Council and Executive on fundamental areas of funding policy and strategy, including national capability and training.

NERC Executive Chair, Professor Duncan Wingham, said:

As part of UK Research & Innovation, there are opportunities for the environmental science community to work flexibly across discipline and industry to tackle the cross-sector challenges of the 21st century. Notably, new collective funding streams through UKRI present the opportunity for new ways of working.

To achieve this, it is vital we continue to benefit from the advice and thinking of a broad range of experts outside NERC. Our new network and committee will increase our access to expertise across a wider remit, with the capacity to advise on interdisciplinary and cross-sector opportunities to support both sustained and agile action.

I would like to thank all those who have contributed their time and expertise to NERC's existing boards and I look forward to working with many as part of the new network.

As part of this transition, three existing NERC advisory groups will formally end. These are the Training Advisory Board, the Joint Capital Advisory Group and the Strategic Programme Advisory Group. Members of these bodies have been invited to join the NERC Advisory Network, alongside a wider recruitment in spring 2019.

Further information

Mary Goodchild
External Communications Manager
01793 411939
07710 147485


1. NERC is the UK's main agency for funding and managing research, training and knowledge exchange in the environmental sciences. Our work covers the full range of atmospheric, Earth, biological, terrestrial and aquatic science, from the deep oceans to the upper atmosphere and from the poles to the equator. We coordinate some of the world's most exciting research projects, tackling major environmental issues such as climate change, environmental influences on human health, the genetic make-up of life on Earth, and much more. NERC is part of UK Research & Innovation, a non-departmental public body funded by a grant-in-aid from the UK government.