The BSA wrote to HEFCE about the composition of the Sociology and Social Work and Social Policy sub panels and posted a public statement linking to that letter on its website. The BSA’s statement was based on the BSA’s own equality and diversity analysis of the composition of the REF sub panels for Sociology and Social Work and Social Policy. An administrative error was made in the process of transferring data from sub panel membership application forms to an anonymised format which resulted in the analysis being incorrect. We said that 10% of BSA nominations self-identified as BAME and we expressed our concern at the low level of BAME representation on the Sociology and Social Work and Social policy sub panels.
The facts, as far as we can say at present, are as follows:
- The BSA submitted 40 nominations across eight of the sub panels and five (12.5%) of these nominations were from people who self-described as BAME.
- Two (just over 14%) of the current 14 people appointed to the Sociology sub panel are BAME.
- We do not have equality and diversity data for sub panel members that were not nominated by the BSA however we can say that at least three (just over 8%) of the current 37 combined memberships of the Sociology and Social Work and Social Policy sub panels are BAME as these were nominated by the BSA.
Additional members will be recruited in 2020 to the two sub panels and this may further adjust the level of BAME representation.
We apologise for this error and for any confusion and inconvenience this may have caused.
Susan Halford, President
John Horne, Chair
Judith Mudd, CEO