About Us 
 Current Projects 


About us

Sense About Science was formed in January 2002 to advance an evidence-based approach to scientific issues in the public domain. It was formalised as a Trust in August 2003. The Board of Trustees is the decision-making body.

The Board is supported by an Advisory Council, which is a voluntary network providing time and advice. Sense About Science employs a Director, Tracey Brown and an Assistant, Ellen Raphael. The Director is directly accountable to the Board. Sense About Science is funded through donations from professional and learned societies, companies, trusts, research bodies and individuals. Funding does not entitle any organisation to decision-making authority.

Board of Trustees
Advisory Council
Key Objectives

Board of Trustees

Lord Taverne QC (Chair)

Professor Dame Bridget Ogilvie (Vice Chairman)

Professor Janet Bainbridge OBE

Dr Shereen El Feki

Dr Michael Fitzpatrick, GP

Diana Garnham

Professor Sir Brian Heap CBE

Dr Mark Matfield

Professor Chris Leaver CBE

Sir John Maddox

Dr Peter Marsh

Baroness O'Neill of Bengarve

Dr Christie Peacock

The Lord Plumb of Coleshill D.L.

Back to top

Advisory Council

Professor John Adams

Richard Ayre

Peter Bell

Professor Sir Colin Berry

Professor Colin Blakemore

Professor Robert Boyd

Professor Derek Burke CBE

Professor Sir David Carter

Professor John Coggins

Professor Phil Dale

Professor Adrian Dixon

Dr Simon Festing

Dr Ron Fraser

Professor Nicola Gray

Lord Hunt of Chesterton

Lord Jenkin of Roding

Professor Trevor Jones

Professor Sir Peter Lachmann

Dr Stephen Ladyman MP

Prue Leith OBE

Dr Robin Lovell Badge

Professor Julian Ma

Professor Alan Malcolm

Professor Vivian Moses

Professor Sir Keith Peters

Dr Matt Ridley

Professor Lord Turnberg of Cheadle

Dr Roger Turner

Professor Michael Wilson

Back to top

Key Objectives

The objectives of Sense About Science are:

1. To advance the education of the public in any branch of scientific research (including social science) and in particular by the dissemination of such research and useful information about such research.

2. To promote (for the benefit of the community) the knowledge and understanding of the public of, and to stimulate the interest of the public in, the creation, presentation and use of scientific research.

In working towards these objectives over the three years from 2002-2005, Sense About Science’s Board has prioritised activities that seek:

1. To promote an evidence-based response to matters of science and risk among institutions, government, the media, companies and NGOs.

2. To counter the effects of anti-science campaigning on the public trust in science and scientists; and to encourage public awareness of how scientific evidence is generated and used.

3. To contribute to an understanding of how public sentiments are influenced against particular scientific developments or evidence.

4. To develop a network among scientists and institutions to offer mutual support and assistance for efforts to address sensationalism and prejudice on scientific matters; and to recover something of the optimism that has traditionally led to careers in science and enthusiasm for its communication.

Back to top


Sense About Science relies on donations to finance its activities. In Year One, financial contributions, for both core and project-related costs, have been received from:

The ABPI, Amersham plc, BBSRC, The Biochemical Society, BP plc, Mr D. Brydon, Prof A. Dixon, The Society for Endocrinology, The Society for General Microbiology, GlaxoSmithKline, Halifax Bank of Scotland, ISAAA, John Innes Centre, The John Innes Trust, Mr M. Livermore, Oxford GlycoSciences plc, Blackwells Publishing, Dr M. Ridley, Social Issues Research Centre, Unilever plc.

Help with equipment, facilities and services has been received from:
AXA Investment Management, Horticultural Research International, The Natural History Museum, Lord Stevenson of Coddenham, WPP.

Funding does not entitle any organisation to decision-making authority.

Back to top