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Diversity and inclusion

What does a physicist look like?

The Institute of Physics (IOP) has collected data about our membership and governance to understand the profile of our members and gain some insights into who they are – diverse people with different ages, ethnicities, beliefs and much more. This helps to determine our priorities for action, to continue our work to ensure equality of opportunity for everyone involved with physics.

Our membership survey

We undertook an anonymous survey of our UK and Ireland membership in July 2015, which has provided valuable information that will help us to continue our commitment to make our services accessible to all, and to implement policies and practices that are fair, inclusive and effective. It enables us to work towards our aim of being a fully inclusive organisation, where all staff and members are valued, and to ensure that all members, and potential members, can participate fully in our activities.

This was the second time we had conducted this survey, following the first in 2011. The demographic range of the responses to the survey were comparable to the 2011 results. Around 13% of the membership responded. We will repeat the survey in 2019. All respondents were given the option of “prefer not to say” on all questions, but relatively few people selected this.

Our membership and governance

The Institute’s Diversity and Inclusion Committee monitors and reviews diversity in our membership and governance activities to help determine our priorities for action. We have set out our most up-to-date data and information.

Our staff

We have included data on our staff profile.

Our strategic priorities for diversity and inclusion

In line with the Institute’s strategy, we have developed strategic priorities for the Diversity and Inclusion Programme. These are:

  • Championing diversity and inclusion across the STEM community
  • Building capacity on diversity and inclusion within the Institute’s activities and governance
  • Promoting wider participation in physics education and careers at all levels from under-represented groups
  • Ensuring we have an inclusive working environment where all staff respect and value each other

What does a physicist look like? Who do you think of when you think "physicist"?

Download the report (PDF, 1.7MB)