The Physiological Society’s policy work aims to identify and act upon issues that are of importance to our Members and to physiology as a discipline. We engage with a number of stakeholders, both within and outside of Government, and policy makers to promote physiology in science and education policy. We have developed a stakeholder map and index to help illustrate some of the groups that we work with, and to provide a portal for our members discover more on policy areas that might be of interest. If you are interested in any of the topics of our policy work, you can contact firstname.lastname@example.org for further information.
Health of Physiology
The Society has conducted an investigation into the health of the discipline of physiology. This covers the research being conducted, the education of new physiologists, the landscape of legislation in which physiology exists, and what efforts must be made to safeguard the future of the discipline. The report detailing this work was released at Physiology 2016 on 30th July. For more details and to download the report, click here.
The recent vote to leave the European Union will have significant effects on the science sector, some of which are already being felt. The Society released a statement after the announcement of the result, which can be viewed here. The future policy work of The Society will aim to protect physiology research in the new regulatory regime, ensuring access to funding and the success of international collaboration.
Changes to Research Structure
The Government has announced that the recommendations of Sir Paul Nurse from his review of the Research Councils will be taken forward. These are to be enacted in the Higher Education and Research Bill, which is currently before Parliament. An overseeing body, UK Research and Innovation, is being created, which will control the Research Councils and Innovate UK. The Society has responded to consultations throughout the planning of these measures and will continue to work with government to ensure the changes bring about an effective, well-regulated research environment in the UK.
UK knowledge landscape
The Prime Minister’s Council for Science and Technology (www.gov.uk/cst) has launched a project to better understand the UK Science Landscape. The aim of this project is to build a picture of the whole research landscape in the UK and to develop an evidence base to help inform future strategic decision-making.
The online “landscape” tool seeks to find out more about how disciplines interact with each other; understand collaborations between researchers both nationally and internationally; how research is funded; and the identification of key infrastructure. We would strongly encourage all those active in physiological research to take part in this project. To do so please access the online landscape tool here.