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Research Board

We advise on science and research policy, the funding of psychological research, and the submission of evidence to public or private bodies.

About

The Research Board acts as champions and advisors for high quality research for the Society. The Research Board reports to and advises the Board of Trustees on science and research policy, the funding of psychological research, the submission of evidence to public or private bodies, as well as other matters relating to the promotion and advancement of psychological science.

The main responsibilities of the Research Board are:

  • Influencing internal and external funding for the support and encouragement of research
  • Reviewing psychological research within the UK and elsewhere, research conducted by our members, and research sponsored by the Society
  • Providing informed and impartial advice on research issues in response to internal and external enquiry
  • Commissioning or undertaking enquiries to produce expert and authoritative reports on research issues of interest to the Society and the wider public
  • Supporting, on grounds of eligibility and quality, research activities planned or conducted by Society members
  • Promoting research (both discipline based and multidisciplinary) through the dissemination of results through conferences, seminars and other means
  • Defining standards for the training of postgraduate students in research methods
  • Working to maximise the availability of funds to support psychological research

Download the Research Board terms of reference 

For any enquiries please contact the Research Board team

Activities

Through its activities, the Research Board promotes the advancement and diffusion of knowledge through new developments in psychological science.

These activities include:

Working parties

The Research Board liaises closely with other society boards and committees on a number of working parties.

Lobbying and liaison

The Research Board via its membership of the Joint Committee for Psychology in Higher Education liaises with key funding bodies such as the ESRC, BBSRC, MRC and the Wellcome Trust, as well as the Higher Education Funding Councils for England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland.

It links with other relevant bodies to ensure psychology is represented in appropriate forums.

Our partners include the Association of Heads of Psychology Departments, the Higher Education Council, Campaign for Science & Engineering , the Royal Society, the British Academy, Academy for Social Sciences and the British Science Association. 

Awards and grants

To promote, encourage and reward outstanding achievements in psychological science the board administers a range of awards. Grant schemes are also offered to support the advancement of psychological science.

Research guidelines and policy documents

The board publishes a range of guidelines and documents to promote high standards of ethical conduct and to promote psychological science.

Meeting dates

2022 upcoming meeting dates

19 October

  • Time: 9.30am - 1pm
  • Location: via zoom  
  • Deadline for agenda items: 23 September

Reports

Research Board Brief Report - 19 May 2021

Research Excellence Framework 2021

The Board noted the announcement of “The future of research assessment programme” by UKRI, aimed at exploring possible approaches to the assessment of research performance and understand what a healthy, thriving research system looks like and how an assessment model can be form from its foundation. The Head of Research and Impact will ensure that opportunities to contribute are maximised.

Covid-19 Impact on Departments Survey Outcomes

The Board received a brief presentation on the outcomes of the survey from the Head of Research and Impact. The full report and accompanying infographics will be published in July. A pulse survey to follow up on key areas of concern is planned to go out to Departments in the Autumn.

Covid-19 Impact on Research

Further to the paper outlining the impact of the pandemic on developmental psychology research, a paper setting out concerns was received from the Psychobiology Section. The board agreed that a letter highlighting these concerns and the impact of conducting research would be sent to the main funders of psychological research (including BBSRC and ESRC).

Deputy Chair

The Board appointed Dr Duncan Guest as one of its Deputy Chairs 2021-21.

Association of Technical Support Staff in Psychology

The Board supported a proposal to invite a representative of the Association to attend meetings of the Board, in line with the EPS and AHPD.

BPS Books Strategy 2021-26

The Board considered and approved the proposed strategy.

Decolonising research

The Board considered a discussion paper on this issue and agreed that a Task and Finish Group would be convened from members of the Board to prepare appropriate guidance for researchers.

Awards Showcase Seminar Series

A proposal for a series of 4 seminars to celebrate and showcase the work of the recipients of the main BPS awards in research and practice in 2019 and 2020 was approved.

Guidelines for Internet Mediated Research

The Board approved the revised guidelines for immediate release.

Conference 2021

The Board received an update on the forthcoming online conference on 1-2nd July 2021. The main theme is Positive Adaptations: Psychological Strengths to acknowledge the complex and wide ranging challenges that we have all faced because of the global pandemic, and through natural disasters, climate change and political conflict. With a focus on lessons learned and positive adaptions for the future our conference will explore how to support resilience and compassion in our own profession. We will also consider how psychology is leading in embedding equality, diversity and inclusion in society. As well as how to help people understand, and act, to positively change the barriers faced by many in the UK. Keynote speakers include Cass Sunstein and Ann Phoenix; with invited symposia on Covid-19 and inputting expert advice into Government, political psychology and disaster, crisis and trauma.

Vote of Thanks

This was my last meeting as chair of the Board. Many thanks to Lisa Morrison Coulthard for her outstanding work and support to the Board over the last 6 years. It has been a delight and pleasure working with Lisa and the Board has achieved a huge amount during this time. I look forward to watching (from a far) as the Board continues to deliver on its learned society objectives.

Research Board Brief Report - 28 February 2021

Research Excellence Framework 2021

The Board noted that the call for additional experts for the sub-panels – for full members, impact assessors and output assessors. The Head of Research and Impact will co-ordinate putting a set of potential nominees together for consideration by the REF Sub-Group. The Board noted that for UOA4 – specific expertise is needed in health psychology/psychobiology, social psychology (social cognition and social neuropsychology) and developmental psychology. Psychological expertise is also needs for other sub-panels.

APA-DGP-BPS Pre-registration Task Force

The Chair reported on the work of the taskforce to develop guidelines for pre-registration and trying to drive forward a gold standard of what should be included, such as PRISMA and CONSORT but for pre-registration. Members of the Board were invited to feedback on the draft template. It is intended to launch the guidelines at a symposium at the ICP 2020.

Joint Initiative with the UK Reproducibility Network

The Board considered the timeline and criteria for two fully costed bursaries for the BPS Conference 2020 aimed at postgraduate and early career researchers presenting a paper linked to a symposium on open science was approved. These will be co-badged with UKRN. It was agreed that the timescale would be brought forward to encourage applications at the point that submissions are being made to the conference.

Open Data

The Board received the report from the Chair and Head of Research and Impact on the Open Data Sandpit held in early February 2020. The Board approved, subject to final amendments, a position paper on Open Data and an updated Statement on Authorship and Publication Credit.

Guidelines for Psychologists Working With Animals

The Board approved the revised draft guidelines. The document has also been approved by the Ethics Committee and so will now be appropriately formatted ready for formal publication.

UKRI Open Access Review Consultation

The Boar considered the consultation and in particular the proposals relation to open access requirements for monographs, book chapters and edited collections. Concern was expressed that there is no current publishing model for such OA access and the timescale for development (by 2024) is very short. Other concerns included the lack of recognition of the contribution that hybrid journals are making towards OA. Input from Wiley will also be sought to inform the BPS response.

Early Career Event

An update on the event scheduled for 3rd April 2020 presented to the Board. The focus is on open science with talks from a wide range of speakers, the event will be held at the University of Glasgow as well as being live streamed and recorded.

Conferences and Events

The Chair of the Standing Conference Committee raised concerns in relation to the disbandment of the Conference and Events Team on the staff, and the lack of consultation with members regarding the changes and the move to support for events being outsourced to KC Jones. This concern was echoed by members of the Board and the Chair agreed to refer these concerns to the Board of Trustees.

Equality, Diversity and Inclusion

The board supported a proposal to pilot blind reviewing for its Undergraduate Research Assistantship Scheme. If successful, this will be rolled out to other schemes as appropriate.

Research Board Brief Report - 12 February 2021

Research Excellence Framework 2021

The Board noted the appointment of Psychologists to other sub-panels and the addition of Professor Christopher Eccleston to UOA4. The news has been extremely well received across the academic community. The Chair reflected on the importance of the strong nominations submitted for this additional round of appointments and that the concerns raised by the Board regarding gaps in expertise on UOA4 had been listened to.

APA-DGP-BPS Pre-registration Task Force

The Chair reported that the Psychology Research Preregistration-Quantitative Template has now been launched as a result of the excellent international collaborative effort. This news was welcomed by the Board.

Joint Initiative with the UK Reproducibility Network

The Board received a report on the joint webinar with UKRN held in November 2020 on “The Truth About Open Research”. This was well attended with over 120 delegates and lightning talks and a panel session. A further event will be planned for later in 2021.

Conference 2021

The Board received an update on the forthcoming online conference on 1-2nd July 2021. The main theme is to be confirmed shortly. Claudia Hammond has confirmed that she will compere the event as she did for 2020.

Conference and Events Committee

The Board approved a proposal to disband the Standing Conference Committee and to convene a new Conference and Events Committee. This committee will bring together representatives from each of the main strategy boards to develop an overall conference and events strategy for the BPS that encompasses the best of psychological research, education and training and practice; reflects our interdisciplinarity; and is representative of the core values of our members. This will involve the development of overarching conference and event themes; convening programming committees to ensure that these events are optimally serving the membership and showcasing the key contributions and impact of UK psychologists to external stakeholders. Some of the SCC members will continue as the programming committee for the Conference 2021, with Mark Sergeant appointed as chair. The process for the appointment of the new committee members will commence shortly.

Code of Human Research Ethics

The Board approved the revised draft Code. The document is also to be considered by the Ethics Committee.

Open Data

In furtherance of its aim to support researchers to engage in open science practices, including open data, the Board approved guidance for preparing participant information sheets and a template for obtaining valid consent. These will be published on the website as part of the portfolio of resources on open data as soon as possible.

Research Board Brief Report - 23 October 2020

Print to Digital (P2D) Project

The Board received an informative presentation from Dawn Morris, Preparation for Publication Manager outlining the development of a new digital system to enable greater visibility, accessibility and dissemination of member network outputs.

Research Excellence Framework 2021

The Board noted the update on the timetable and additional sub-panel nominations for the REF.

APA-DGP-BPS Pre-registration Task Force

The Chair reported on the forthcoming launch of the guidelines for pre-registration for quantitative research. This has been the culmination of a collaboration between the APA, DGP and the BPS.

Joint Activity with the UK Reproducibility Network

The Board received an update on the webinar organised for 13th November 2020 on The Truth about Open Research. This event is aimed at postgraduate and early career researchers and aims to challenge some of the perceived barriers to open research.

Open Data

The Board received and approved a draft guide on “The Truth about Open Data”. Following minor amendments this will be published and widely disseminated.

Conferences and Events

Conference 2020 was held on-line on 30th and 1st July. The Acting Chair of the Standing Conference Committee presented an evaluation report on the event. It had been successful and the feedback was especially positive. On-line events for students and graduates will be held on 21/1/2021 and 21/11/2020 respectively.

Awards Review

The Board approved a proposal for a review of Society awards. The proposal will be referred to the next meetings of the Practice Board and Education and Training Board for consideration.

Steering Group on Benefits and Social Justice

The Board approved a proposal for the formation of a Steering Group of expert members to support the BPS policy work in this important area. A call for statements of interest will be published shortly.

Spearman Medal

The Board considered and approved a proposal to retire the Medal due to Spearman’s links with eugenics. The proposal has been referred to the Board of Trustees for ratification. The communications team have been asked to provide guidance and support on the formal reporting of this decision.

BPS Journals

The Board considered the outcomes and recommendations of a benchmarking exercise and review of a bid from Wiley for the BPS journals contract. The recommendation to accept the bid was approved by the Board and has been referred to the Board of Trustees for ratification.

BPS Books

The Board considered the outcomes and recommendations of a benchmarking exercise in relation to BPS Books and the formation of a Task and Finish Group comprising representation from the RB, the Practice Board and the Education and Training Board. The proposals were approved by the Board and will be referred to the Board of Trustees for ratification.

Memory Based Evidence

The Board considered and approved a proposal for the disbandment of the Task and Finish Group and Independent Review Group following a number of issues regarding consensus and collaboration in the TFG which have led to the resignation of the Chair. Due to the strength of differing opinion regarding memory based evidence, the communications team have been asked to provide guidance and support on the formal reporting of this decision.

Research Board Brief Report - 20 May 2020

Member Journey Initiative

The Board received an informative presentation from Karen Beamish, Director of Standards and Professional development, on this initiative to utilise human-centred design thinking to identify and better understand members’ journeys with the BPS. This has led to the identification of key improvements that can be made to our membership structure and the benefits of being a member.

Research Excellence Framework 2021

The Board noted the response in relation to the review of timescales for the REF. It seems apparent that there will be a delayed timescale for submissions and evidence of impact. An announcement is expected from Research England and the other funding agencies very soon.

BPS Response to Covid-19 Teaching Related Issues

The Board received an update from Claire Tilley, Head of workforce Education, Training and Standards, on the immediate response of the BPS to the changing circumstances in HEIs and their ability to deliver accredited programmes, especially assessment components. Claire reported that the BPS response was intended to provide as much agility and flexibility as possible.

Key concerns from the Research Community on Covid-19

The Board discussed concerns including PhD/doctoral student completions, any disproportionate impact of the pandemic on female academics (in relation to grants, promotions, article submissions, research completion etc.) as well as early career academics, laboratory-based research, the ethics of conducting research with vulnerable populations, placement for students, and innovative research methods. It was agreed the BPS could provide a hub for innovative approaches and best practice guidance/protocols. A survey will also be conducted to establish broader key issues for the academic community and how the BPS can help.

APA-DGP-BPS Pre-registration Task Force

The Chair reported on the work of the taskforce to develop guidelines for pre-registration and trying to drive forward a gold standard of what should be included, such as PRISMA and CONSORT but for pre-registration. The guidelines are to be launched later this year.

Joint Activity with the UK Reproducibility Network

The Board welcomed a proposal to hold a joint webinar with UKRN on myths, fears and misunderstandings on open research. This will be organised for later in the summer

Open Data

The Board received the final position paper on Open Data and an updated Statement on Authorship and Publication Credit. These are to be launched in the first week of June.

UKRI Open Access Review Consultation

The Board considered and approved the draft response to the consultation. The main concerns relate to the proposed zero embargo period for Green open access, author compliance, the timescales for OA monographs and the timescales for the implementation of the new policy and how this is at odd with the Plan S requirements for 2024.

Conferences and Events

Conference 2020 will be now held on-line on 30th and 1st July. On-line events for students and graduates are also being planned for later in the year.

Members

Professor Andy Tolmie

  • Chair (2021-2024)
  • EFPA Standing Committee on Traffic and Transport

Dr Duncan Guest

  • Deputy Chair  and Cognitive Psychology Section

Dr Mark Andrews

  • Mathematical, Statistical & Computing Section

Dr Claire Wilson

  • Psychology of Education Section

Dr Deborah Riby

  • Developmental Psychology Section

Prof Zenobia Nadirshaw

  • Psychotherapy Section

Dr Shelley McKeown Jones

  • Social Psychology Section

Dr Michael Smith

  • Psychobiology Section

Dr Paul Sullivan

  • History & Philosophy of Psychology Section

Dr Rose Capdevila

  • Psychology of Women Section

Dr Jo Brooks

  • Qualitative Section

Professor Ho Law

  • Transpersonal Psychology Section

Ms Jane Henry

  • Consciousness & Experiential Psychology Section

Dr Adam Jowett

  • Psychology of Sexualities Section

Dr Carl Walker

  • Community Psychology Section

Dr Annette Greenwood

  • Crisis, Disasters and Trauma Psychology Section

Dr Deborah Powney

  • Male Psychology Section

Dr Ashley Weinberg

  • Political Psychology Section

Dr Chris Fullwood

  • Cyberpsychology Section

Dr Kevin Wilson-Smith

  • Defence & Security Psychology Section

Dr Andrew Thompson

  • Division of Clinical Psychology

Professor Ho Law

  • Division of Counselling Psychology

Dr Olympia Palikara

  • Division of Education & Child Psychology

Mr Martin Fisher

  • Division of Forensic Psychology

Dr Gillian Shorter

  • Division of Health Psychology

Professor Andrew Hill

  • Division of Sport & Exercise Psychology

Professor Ros Searle

  • Division of Occupational Psychology

Vacancy - awaiting confirmation

  • Division of Academics, Researchers and Teachers in Psychology

Dr Sallie Baxendale

  • Division of Neuropsychology

Dr John Newland

  • Special Group for Psychologists and Social Services

Dr Catherine Steele

  • Special Group in Coaching Psychology

Vacancy - awaiting confirmation

  • Special Group for Independent Practitioners

Dr Jackie Greatorex

  • AGM Elected

Professor Jan Noyes

  • AHPD representative

Dr Joni Holmes

  • EPS nominee

Madeleine Pownall (PsyPAG Chair)

Jenny Terry (incoming 2021)

  • PsyPAG Representative

Dr Catherine Talbot

  • Early Career representative (May 21)

Dr Jasmine Childs-Fegredo

  • Early Career Representative (Oct 21)

Dr Mark Sergeant

  • Conference 2021 Scientific Committee Chair

Dr Miltiades Hadjiosif

  • EFPA Standing Committee on Community Psychology

Professor Alexander Easton

  • Responsibility Holder for Animal Welfare in Psychology

Dr Katherine Berry

  • Editorial Advisory Group Chair

Dr Rachel Shaw

  • Co-option

Dr Richard Stephens

  • Co-option Psychologist & Digest Policy Committee

Prof Thom Baguley

  • Co-optee

Prof Ingrid Lunt

ex-officio Chair HOPC Committee