A Welcoming and Inclusive Society: Next Steps

Meeting Our Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Commitments

The Learned Society of Wales has made improving its equality, diversity and inclusion [EDI] a top priority.

We have achieved the following EDI targets, that were set in January 2021:

  • By the end of the 2021-22 Society year, our Council and governance committees will have equal representation of men and women (other than where committees have an odd number of members). 
  • By the end of the 2021-22 election cycle, we will have significantly reduced the gender gap on all Scrutiny Committees where women are currently under-represented.
  • At least 50% of Fellowship nominations will be for women.

We have made progress in recent years. There is, however, more that we must do and more that we will do.

How Welcoming and Inclusive is the Learned Society of Wales?

EDI Survey and Initial Report: Summer 2021

In 2021, the Society’s Council commissioned a survey and report to explore how welcoming and inclusive the Society is. An online survey was completed by 140 people, including existing Fellows, those who had been nominated for Fellowship but were not successful and those who have never been nominated.

Twenty people offered to take part in follow-up one-to-one interviews. They had the chance to share and discuss their experiences and perspectives in more detail.

The report summarises the findings of the survey. It makes seven headline recommendations for improving the Society’s EDI.

EDI Working Group: Spring 2022

The Society’s Council wants to do the report and its recommendations justice. This will need the right expertise and space for in-depth discussion. It has therefore decided to set up an EDI Working Group.

The Working Group aims to finish its initial review of the recommendations in time for Council’s October meeting.

We are looking for Fellows who would like to be part of that Working Group.


The EDI Working Group will have the following members: 

  • Three Fellows:
    • Professor Terry Threadgold, who will chair the group and report to Council on progress / recommendations
    • One existing member of the Fellowship
    • One new Fellow from those elected in 2022
  • One external expert on EDI : Karen Cooke, Organisational Development Manager (Human Resources) at Cardiff University and Chair of Enfys, the University Staff LGBT+ Network
  • Three staff members: the Chief Executive, Clerk and Fellowship Officer

The Working Group can co-opt members, from inside or outside the Fellowship, to support its work as necessary. 

It will begin work as soon as possible and meet monthly between April and October 2022.

Terms of reference

The Working Group will:

  1. Accept the recommendation fully and propose appropriate actions to Council; or 
  2. Accept the recommendation in principle but seek further information or advice about how it might be implemented; or 
  3. Refer the recommendation to a more appropriate body (e.g. the Fellowship Committee) or defer it as part of a wider review of the Society’s strategy;
  4. Reject the recommendation.
  • Report to Council in June and October, seeking Council’s input.
  • See through approved actions to their conclusion, working with other committees or staff members as required. 

If you are interested in joining the working group please download and return the application form.

If you have any questions or comments about our EDI approach, the survey and report or the work of the Working Group, please do not hesitate to get in touch with Amanda Kirk.