Major concerns of the Council were: R&D, productivity, and innovation; the organisation of government research, the research councils and the national laboratories; and the supply and training of scientific personnel and the Brain Drain (Dr Jones was the author of The Brain Drain, HMSO, 1967, Cmnd 3417). Other subjects that it considered included: international relations in science and technology and the Aigran report on scientific and technical co-operation in Europe; space research; comparative levels of taxation in different countries; the European 300 GeV particle accelerator project; national priorities in science and technology; the machine tools and instruments industries; marine science; proposals for an international organisation to study the major problems of advanced (i.e. industrialised) societies; and environmental pollution.
In 1968 the Council published a report Technological innovation in Britain, the drafting of which is the subject of File SZ/CACST/3. In the same year it commissioned Christopher Layton of Political and Economic Planning (PEP) to conduct a study into the reasons why Britain appeared to be obtaining a poor return from its large investment in qualified scientists and engineers. Layton's report was later published as Ten innovations: an international study on technological development and the rise of qualified scientists and engineers in ten industries, London, George Allen & Unwin Ltd, 1972.
Correspondence relating to the CACST is also to be found in files in Series SZ/CSA.