SAPEA call for nominations on the topic Biodegradability of Plastics in the Open Environment

SAPEA call for nominations on the topic Biodegradability of Plastics in the Open Environment

Call for nominations for an international working group to conduct the evidence review

Biodegradability of Plastics: Plastic bottle in a beach

The European Scientific Advice Mechanism (SAM) provides independent and transparent scientific advice to the European Commission, working with a Group of Chief Scientific Advisors and the European Academies (SAPEA). SAPEA (Science Advice for Policy by European Academies) comprises the five European Academy Networks: 

SAPEA represents over 100 Academies in more than 40 European countries, and spans all the major disciplines (including engineering, humanities, medicine, science and social sciences).

The Group of Chief Scientific Advisors intends to produce a policy-based Scientific Opinion on the topic of Biodegradability of plastics in the open environment

The overarching question is:

From a scientific point-of-view and an end-of-life perspective, and applying to plastics that biodegrade either in the terrestrial, riverine or marine environments, and considering the waste hierarchy and circular economy approach: What are the criteria and corresponding applications of biodegradable plastics that are beneficial to the environment, compared with non-biodegradable plastics?

SAPEA will undertake the evidence review that informs the Scientific Opinion. To address the topic, SAPEA will set up an international and interdisciplinary working group of around 15 expert members, covering both scientific/technical fields and the social sciences/humanities. The experts will provide their input via physical meetings and are expected to draft sections of a report in-between meetings. A final first draft of the evidence review report should be completed by September 2020.

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SAPEA offers the opportunity to raise the profile of your Academy’s work and expertise on a European level. We ask as a first step for the contribution and support of your Academy by nominating experts for the Working Group, in accordance with the expertise indicated in Annex 3.

Please address your response to by the target date of Monday 13th January 2020 (or latest by Friday 17th, after which the call will close).

Nominations of experts should be accompanied by a short curriculum vitae (please not more than 2 pages), together with a short explanation on how the nominee’s experience meets the specific areas of expertise needed listed in Annex 3.

Reasonable travel costs will be reimbursed by SAPEA for attendance at physical working group meetings.


16th December 2019. For further information please contact
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