Table 3

Summary of recommendations in relation to key issues

Key issuesTarget audienceRecommendations
Need for interdisciplinary collaborationPolicy makers
  • Provide and strengthen entry points for all relevant disciplines in responding to the pandemic or health emergency, such as behavioural, social and political sciences, engineering, and economics, bringing added value to clinically and biomedically oriented work.

Scientists and higher education system
  • Provide training and promote scientists’ development of skills facilitating interdisciplinary working early on in higher education system and as part of professional development.

Importance of clear role boundaries for scientists on government advisory boardsPolicy makers
  • Provide clear definitions of advisory and decision-making roles, alongside a transparent roadmap of responsibilities, tasks and procedures, in order to facilitate and enhance effective and trustworthy science advisory process.

Dealing with emerging and changing ‘evidence’ while providing recommendationsScientists and policy makers
  • Promote clear process of assessing the strength of available evidence.

  • Identify strategies to tackle misinformation and disinformation, including during the pandemic as well as long term, through investment in adult and public education on scientific methods and limitations of science.

  • Communicate transparently scientific uncertainties and be explicit in order to maintain trustworthiness and facilitate public trust in science.

Clear communication of science to the publicScientists
  • Communicate current scientific understanding in an approachable, clear and transparent way, separate from political communication.