Select Committee on Science and Technology Written Evidence


Supplementary memorandum submitted by the Royal Society

  During its oral evidence session with the Royal Society on 8 May, the Committee requested additional information about the activities funded from our Science Communication budget and our monitoring policy regarding ethnic minorities. This information is provided below.

1.   Funding for Science Communication

  The Committee requested a breakdown by activity of the £810k of Parliamentary Grant in Aid that we spend under the heading of Science Communication (ie our public understanding activities) and for an indication of how much of this is spent in-house (Q 42). This information is presented below. Of the £810k, £180k is spent on Royal Society activities.
Grant to BA185
Grant to RI100
COPUS Grants Programme105
COPUS Activities105
Science and Technology and Industry programme 50
Education Grants to school-scientist partnerships 30
Support for educational activities (Science Olympiads, British Youth Science Fair, Acclaim project, website for 16-19 year olds) 90
Summer Science exhibition55
Communications and media training for scientists 15
Royal Society Public Understanding Programme 75

2.   Ethnic minority monitoring

  The Committee requested details of the Society's monitoring policy with respect to ethnic minorities (Q 70).

2.1  Staff

  It is the Society's policy to treat employees and job applicants fairly, regardless of gender, sexual orientation, age, ethnic origin or disability. An equal opportunities form, requesting information on age, gender, ethnic origin, marital status and disability, is included as part of our recruitment forms. This section of the application is removed on receipt and is not seen by the recruitment panel. A similar form is available for employees. An analysis of this information is presented to the Senior Management Team on a quarterly basis.

2.2  Research Fellowship holders

  We started comprehensive equal opportunities monitoring for all our research fellowship schemes in October 2001 (prior to this we had only collected data on gender). The application forms for our awards include a form asking applicants to indicate their age, gender, ethnic origin and whether they are registered disabled. This form is separated from the rest of the application form and is not seen by those involved in the selection process. We intend to extend equal opportunities monitoring to other research support schemes (eg our research and conference grants) in the future. An analysis of this baseline data will be used to inform subsequent policy discussions in this area.

2.3  Fellows of the Royal Society

  As stated in section 12.5 of our written evidence, we do not monitor for ethnicity among the Fellows of the Royal Society (FRS).

2.4  Related activities

  Under our educational programme (outlined in Section 5.7 of our written evidence) the Society is working jointly with Sheffield Hallam University on the Acclaim Project, designed to raise young people's awareness of cutting edge scientific research in this country and of the achievements of UK scientists. The Acclaim project is funded jointly from private sources and our PGA, and among future developments of the project under consideration is a focus on scientists from the ethnic minorities as role models.

May 2002

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