NIRAB was initially established in accordance with Cabinet Office guidance as a temporary advisory board, by Ministerial appointment, for a period of up to three years in duration. Its term ran from January 2014 to December 2016.


NIRAB was reconvened and reconstituted in 2018 and will work in partnership with NIRO to advise Ministers, Government Departments and Agencies on issues related to nuclear research and innovation in the UK.


The role of NIRAB is set out in terms of reference and can be summarised as follows:


  • Monitor the delivery and impact of the BEIS Nuclear Innovation Programme and recommend any amendments that may be necessary in the light of outputs from the programme and developments in the nuclear landscape.

  • Advise where innovation could drive down costs across the whole nuclear cycle

  • Identify opportunities for greater collaboration with industry and international partners

  • To support the development of recommendations for new research and innovation programmes required to underpin priority policies including energy policy and industrial policy

  • To oversee a regular review of the nuclear research and innovation landscape which may include facilities, capability, portfolio and capacity in the UK

  • To foster greater cooperation and coordination across the whole of the UK’s nuclear research and innovation capability, portfolio and capacity


NIRAB does not have responsibility for managing or delivering R&D programmes or for directing or managing R&D budgets.