Second Session - 8 December 2021

The Science of Transparency: Delivering Quality of Life Improvements through Transparent Science & Policymaking

 The second session of the Bayer Life Talks took place on 8 December 2021. View the replay and event   information below, and keep an eye out here for details of future sessions.


A trusted relationship between science, business, and policymaking is essential for the proper functioning of our democracies. Science and academia play a necessary role in policymaking, offering evidence-based research to guide the formulation and direction of the rules that govern. We are, however, living in a period of increased distrust in traditional institutions, with the organisations and experts that were once valued and relied upon, now subject to growing skepticism.

In the context of the recent strengthening of transparency rules for those seeking to influence policymaking in Europe and following the public consultation on developing a fit for purpose European innovation ecosystem to boost innovation cohesion, this second session in the Bayer Life Talks will look at the fault lines and opportunities in the relationship between policymakers, business, and the scientific community. It will debate the role of business in funding academic and scientific research and what tools are available to ensure transparency and accountability in the process. What guard rails currently exist to ensure that evidence-based policymaking can thrive?

With the European Union undertaking several initiatives to reinforce the ambition and global competitiveness of its European Research Area, and while the demand for insight and future proof policymaking increases, how is the business community working to ensure that it continues to play a positive role in science and research, and what are the implications for the innovation agenda in Europe?

Key Themes


Quality of Life

Global Competitiveness


Water and Agriculture: How can EU and global policy and innovation ensure long-term water and food security
10:30 - 10:40
Opening Remarks
Opening Remarks image
Moderator: Paul Adamson
Chairman, Forum Europe
10:40 - 11:00
Kick off Conversation
Kick off Conversation image
Mina Guli
CEO, Thirst Foundation
Kick off Conversation image
Moderator: Paul Adamson
Chairman, Forum Europe
11:00 - 12:00
Roundtable Discussion and Q&A
Roundtable Discussion and Q&A image
Petteri Taalas
Secretary-General, World Meteorological Organization
Roundtable Discussion and Q&A image
Pedro Gallardo
Vice President, Copa
Roundtable Discussion and Q&A image
Matthias Berninger
Executive Vice President Public Affairs, Science, Sustainability & HSE, Bayer AG
Roundtable Discussion and Q&A image
Mina Guli
CEO, Thirst Foundation
Roundtable Discussion and Q&A image
Shamiso Kumbirai Mlilwana
SDG Water Investments Specialist, Global Water Partnership Southern Africa
Roundtable Discussion and Q&A image
Moderator: Paul Adamson
Chairman, Forum Europe
Event Close
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Note: All session timings below are in Central European Summer Time (CEST)

15:00 – 15:05

Opening Remarks

15:05 – 15:20

Keynote Presentation

15:20 – 16:15



Event Close

Speakers included

The event brought together senior officials from the European institutions, alongside industry, NGOs, academics, and other interested stakeholders.

Paul Adamson

Chairman, Forum Europe

Nicole Grobert

Chair, Group of Chief Scientific Advisors to the European Commission

Maria da Graça Carvalho

Member, European Parliament

Michael Vorländer

Head of Unit, Education and Research, German Permanent Representation to the EU

David Mair

Head of Unit, Science Advice to Policy, EC Joint Research Centre

Dr Anna-Maija Mertens

Executive Director, Transparency International Germany

Lidia Borrell-Damián

Secretary-General, Science Europe

Stephen Scraff

Head, Public Affairs EU, Bayer AG

Monika Lessl

SVP, Head Corporate R&D and Social Innovation, Bayer AG

Event Partners

Get in touch

For more information on any aspect of the Bayer Life Talks series, please contact us using the details below:

Joe Nott

Event Manager | Forum Europe

Tel: +44 (0) 2920 783 020 

Email: [email protected]