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Our strategy: Skills

From a young child who looks in awe at the stars to someone dreaming of a new career, we want everyone to see that they can be part of changing their world through physics. 

But do they have the encouragement, the reassurance that someone like them could study physics and succeed? Do we have the teachers who can bring physics alive? Are we open about the opportunities to gain physics skills at any stage in life, from apprenticeships with rocket scientists to supporting research cures for cancer?

Do people see the different futures in physics and know they’d be welcome wherever they choose to work? Only if we take action.



Our goal:

The opportunities, knowledge and skills that physics can offer will be truly open to all – so we can better understand our world, shape rich and inspiring futures, and build thriving, resilient societies and economies.

The IOP will:

Tackle the physics teacher gap, and open up access to high quality physics education at every educational stage

We will fight for world class physics education for all young people and for measures to close the specialist physics teacher gap in schools through recruitment, retention and retraining. We will work with partners to promote the value of teaching, from primary to postgraduate education, advocate for relevant, inspiring curricula, and ensure educators have the tools and support they need to give every learner the best possible experience of physics.

Make the case for the skills that drive physics-powered sectors

We will work with physics-powered sectors to articulate current and future skills needs and champion new ways to meet them - including a focus on technical routes such as apprenticeships, action on reskilling and upskilling the existing workforce and making the case for our nations to remain open to skilled technicians, researchers and innovators.

Campaign to break down stereotypes

We will continue to campaign to break down the barriers and confront the negative stereotypes that prevent young people, including those from underrepresented groups, from doing physics after the age of 16. Individuals from underrepresented groups will each have their own unique experiences of these barriers and stereotypes. Throughout our work we will consider the protected characteristics and environmental issues that prevent people from being included and from bringing value to the physics community.

Build inclusivity and capability in the community

We will work to ensure that anyone studying or working in physics can thrive in a supportive, inclusive and welcoming environment, including by expanding our respected physics inclusion award beyond gender and academia. We will also develop capability within the physics community through a programme of support and professional development, co-created with our members.

Open up publishing opportunities

Through IOP Publishing we will ensure that all researchers have the same opportunities to become authors, reviewers or editorial board members across all our publications and design progressive, inclusive publishing processes for all.

Our future needs skills

We will fight for physics skills for everyone.

Download the full strategy document (PDF, 4.2MB)

Learn more about our three priorities