Government publishes partial list of SAGE membership as two experts refuse to be named
PUBLISHED: 14:13 04 May 2020 | UPDATED: 14:19 04 May 2020
A partial list of the experts behind the scientific response to the coronavirus outbreak has been published.
Become a Supporter
Almost four years after its creation The New European goes from strength to strength across print and online, offering a pro-European perspective on Brexit and reporting on the political response to the coronavirus outbreak, climate change and international politics. But we can only continue to grow with your support.
The government said that only two participants of the Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (SAGE) had not given permission to be named on the membership list, which included 50 members.
Its publication came after calls for transparency over the group, with concerns raised of a lack of breadth in expertise and the presence of Downing Street adviser Dominic Cummings in meetings.
Downing Street planned only to name those who consented to be on the list, raising concerns over personal security and the need to protect individuals from lobbying.
The identities of many SAGE members were already known, with individual experts choosing to discuss their roles in public.
You may also want to watch:
But this is the first time during the crisis that ministers have detailed the group’s membership.
It includes familiar names such as chief scientific adviser Sir Patrick Vallance and England’s chief medical officer, Professor Chris Whitty.
Science and Technology Committee chairman Greg Clark welcomed the publication of the list, which came alongside an “explainer” of SAGE.
“I strongly welcome the commitment to transparency made by SAGE in publishing the names of the members,” the Conservative MP said.
“This was something my committee called for in order to provide public reassurance that Government decisions are informed by a broad and substantial body of expert advice.”
Transparency concerns had prompted former government chief scientific adviser Sir David King to convene a separate “independent” panel of experts.
Become a Supporter
Almost four years after its creation The New European goes from strength to strength across print and online, offering a pro-European perspective on Brexit and reporting on the political response to the coronavirus outbreak, climate change and international politics. But we can only rebalance the right wing extremes of much of the UK national press with your support. If you value what we are doing, you can help us by making a contribution to the cost of our journalism.Become a supporter