64th Management Board meeting: EFSA Management Board discusses Open EFSA implementation plan, appoints candidates to Scientific Committee, Panels - Audio available
EFSA’s Management Board discussed the implementation plan for an Open EFSA, which sets out measures to entrench transparency and openness even further into EFSA’s scientific processes. Members also appointed candidates to the Scientific Committee and eight scientific Panels which are due for renewal in July.
Board members exchanged views on the draft implementation plan on the first phase of the transformation to an “Open EFSA”, which describes measures to improve openness and transparency identified by EFSA and/or suggested by stakeholders during a public consultation on Open EFSA in 2014.
In the detailed plan, EFSA has listed the assessment of measures already underway or which will be rolled out by the end of 2016. These will include such areas as simplifying the requirements to take an active role in public consultations and increased accessibility to key data packages of Member States, to the provision of more feedback on reasons why certain data were, or were not, used in a risk assessment. A second category of measures to be assessed will be subject to a full cost benefit analysis.
“This is a very exciting initiative. EFSA has already done a lot to try to be as transparent as possible but this is taking it to another level,” Management Board chair Sue Davies said.
The Board also reviewed progress on developing EFSA’s Strategy leading to the year 2020, following initial reflections articulated by Board members in December. The Board discussed the draft objectives proposed for the Strategy, which are:
The draft Strategy will be further reviewed by the Board in June before it is submitted for public consultation.
Appointment of experts:
Following a call for expressions of interest in 2014, the Board appointed candidates to the Scientific Committee and eight of EFSA’s scientific panels, which are due for renewal for a new three-year term from 1 July 2015. They also established a reserve list of suitable candidates.
Out of 807 eligible candidates, the Board appointed 171 experts for membership to the Scientific Committee, and to the Animal Health and Welfare (AHAW), Biological Hazards (BIOHAZ), Contaminants (CONTAM), Plant Health (PLH), Dietetic Products, Nutrition and Allergies (NDA), Feed (FEEDAP), GMO, Plant Protection Products and their Residues (PPR) panels. The names of the experts will become public at the end of April 2015 once they have confirmed their wish to take up the appointment.
Stakeholder Consultative Platform:
The Board agreed to extend by a year the current mandate of the EFSA’s Stakeholder Consultative Platform from 1 July 2015 to 30 June 2016. This extension is aimed at further discussing with a broad range of interested parties on how best to envisage stakeholder engagement so that it is in line with the Open EFSA approach.
Annual Work Programme 2016:
The Board adopted EFSA’s preliminary Annual Management Plan, budget and establishment plan for 2016, which are in Iine with EFSA’s Single Programming Document. With a stable annual budget of around €79 million and a 2% reduction in posts, EFSA will continue efforts to increase efficiencies.
Highlights of the 2016 annual work programme include plans by the Scientific Committee to finalise guidance on expression of uncertainty in risk assessment, and to continue to develop guidance on weight of evidence and biological relevance. As part of its strategy to build on the strong EU risk assessment in Member States, EFSA will create further training opportunities through a fellowship programme together with national food agencies.
In 2016, EFSA will continue to develop target audience-driven communications and seek to increase EFSA’s engagement with external stakeholders through innovative web technologies and methodologies, including social media.
Audiocast and documents
- Welcome by the Chair
- Adoption of the draft Agenda
- EFSA progress report
- Activity Report 2014
- Open EFSA
- EFSA Strategy 2020
- Preliminary Annual Management Plan, Budget & Establishment Plan 2016
- Appointment of the members of the Scientific Committee and eight Scientific Panels
- Anti-fraud strategy
- Extension of the mandate of the Stakeholder Consultative Platform
- Amendments to the Art. 36 list of organisations
- Feedback from the Audit Committee
- EFSA’s 2015 budget execution and transfers