Chair of the Advisory Committee on Releases to the Environment

Body: Advisory Committee on Releases to the Environment (ACRE)
Appointing Department: Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs
Sector: Environment, Food & Rural Affairs
Location: Meetings would be held in central London
Number of Vacancies: 1
Remuneration: £223 per day spent on ACRE business, and reasonable travel expenses
Time Requirements: Up to 5 days per year for meetings; with some business conducted between meetings.


An announcement has been made on the outcome of this appointment.

Mr Eustice has appointed Professor James Dunwell as the new Chair of Advisory Committee on Releases to the Environment:

Professor James Dunwell (as Chair)

Professors Andrew Peters

lan Raybould

The appointments will run from 2 March 2020 until 1 March 2023. All appointments are made on merit and political activity plays no part in the selection process. The appointees have not declared any political activity in the past five years.

Date: 06/05/2020

View Announcement

Campaign Timeline

  • Competition Launched


  • Closed for Applications

    07/11/2019 at 16:00

  • Panel Sift


  • Final Interview Date


  • Announcement



Assessment Panel

Vacancy Description

Advisory Committee on Releases to the Environment (ACRE) is a non-departmental public body composed of leading scientists. It is sponsored by Defra. ACRE provides statutory advice to the UK Government and the Devolved Administrations of Northern Ireland, Wales and Scotland on the potential risks to human health and the environment from the release of genetically modified organisms (GMOs) for research and marketing purposes. ACRE also has a role in evaluating new research findings and any science-based GM matter, as well as providing advice on releasing non-native animals and plants into the environment as bio-control agents.

Person Specification

– a proven track record of achievement in one or more scientific disciplines relevant to the work of ACRE, alongside knowledge of current debates in biotechnology;

– an ability to assess risk, assimilate complex information, and take into account different perspectives and/ or conflicting evidence, and use sound judgement to arrive at proportionate, and practical, conclusions on issues that may be outside your main area of expertise, which can withstand public scrutiny;

– effective interpersonal, and communication skills, demonstrating an ability to persuade, influence, and negotiate, and to build a diverse range of productive, and collaborative relationships, with other Committee members, Ministers, and other stakeholders;

– good media handling skills, and experience of talking to the Press. An ability to communicate complex, and sensitive, scientific ideas clearly, and effectively to a lay audience, as necessary.

Additional Information

We actively encourage applications from individuals from a wide range of backgrounds. Defra is a Disability Confident employer.

How to Apply

All candidates are required to complete the following forms:

• Monitoring form 1 (Conflicts of Interest, Conduct and Political Activity Questionnaire)

• Monitoring form 2 (Diversity Monitoring Questionnaire)

Candidates should submit their CV with education, professional qualifications and employment history and the names and contact details for two referees, together with their statement of suitability.

The statement of suitability should give evidence of the strength and depth of your ability to meet the essential criteria for this role. Please provide specific examples to demonstrate how you meet each of the criteria (max two pages please).

Your CV and statement should be returned to the following address by the closing date: 12.00 (midday) on 7th November. Email to quoting reference APPT02-19.

For further information please email:

1_Candidate pack_chair
2_Monitoring form 1 (Conflicts of Interest and Political Activity)
3_Monitoring form 2 (Diversity)
4_Public Appointments Guidance notes
5_Public Appointments-Privacy Notice
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