Policy-makers define science and innovation policies and in that capacity, they impose a lot of demands on the scientific community. Policy-makers want scientists to extend the frontiers of knowledge with fundamental research; they want the research community to train the next generations of scientists; they want the scientific community to solve grand societal challenges and contribute to economic growth. The discontinuation of the Chief Scientific Adviser post has, of course, been followed by enquiries as to whether this means the European Commission is no longer interested in basing its policies on scientific evidence. The European Commission is reflecting on a new direction to strengthen the interface of science and policy by reorienting itself to draw on a network of national academies and scientific institutions. Northern Europe tends to be much quicker in adopting the practices of scientific support to policy-making; these countries also put a high emphasis on involving the science community and on transparency.