What we do

Promoting political studies

First Minister of Scotland Nicola Sturgeon MSP speaks at the PSA's Annual Conference 2017 on the value of politics experts.

The PSA works tirelessly to promote the interests of the discipline at all levels, to ensure that it continues to flourish and grow.

The PSA has developed a broad range of activities through which it promotes political research and engages with politicians, civil servants, the media and other key opinion-formers, such as:

  • Media briefings and publication of briefing papers on key political issues
  • Regular interaction with parliamentary staff and journalists 
  • Annual awards for leading politicians, journalists and academics
  • Political Insight magazine bringing academic research to a wider audience

The PSA is composed of a number of different and active communities:

You can learn more about these communities and the work they do by visiting their designated pages. 

Helping you professionally

The PSA annual conference is a key event in the political science calendar, offering a unique opportunity for debate, interaction and networking. We also organise a one-day conference for Heads of Departments on issues of concern to them as managers and academics. 

The five journals of the PSA offer a forum for scholarship and debate.

The PSA awards annual travel grants, which enable members to present papers at overseas national PSA conferences and to attend the APSA Teaching and Learning conference. 

Workshops are organised on issues of practical professional concern to early and mid-career academics, such as enhancing teaching and learning skills, getting published, and achieving research impact through engagement with policy-makers and the media. 

The PSA keeps members informed about select committee inquiries, government consultations and other opportunities to engage with policy-makers, and publishes regular case studies of impact and engagement by members.

The PSA is an institutional member of IPSA. The special mandate of IPSA, expressed in its Constitution, is to support the development of political science in all parts of the world, building academic networks linking East and West, North and South. Its aim is to create an inclusive and global political science community in which all can participate. It seeks to promote collaboration between scholars in emerging and established democracies and to support the academic freedoms needed for the social sciences to flourish.