It is with great sadness that the Political Studies Association (PSA) must announce that our annual international conference in Edinburgh (6-8 April 2020) has been cancelled. This includes the PSA’s Undergraduate Conference (3 April) as well as all additional events associated with our presence in the Scottish capital.


As colleagues will appreciate, this difficult decision has been made after reviewing the situation both internationally and in the United Kingdom. This follows weeks of close consultation with trustees, staff and the conference convenors at the University of Edinburgh.


Given the current concerns on the COVID-19 outbreak, the risks posed to travel and large gatherings, and our primary responsibility to the health and welfare of our members, our delegates, our staff and our guests, the PSA has been left with no choice than to cancel the event.


The PSA fully appreciates what this decision means for delegates hoping to participate in the Annual Conference and present their research in Edinburgh. We recognise both the financial implications and lost opportunities to many colleagues as a result of this cancellation.  In light of this, we are offering all delegates a 100% refund of the registration fee. We will be providing more guidance on how to reclaim registration fees next week.


We will also be in touch with our members shortly to make arrangements for our Annual General Meeting.


The Annual Conference normally breaks even every year and is not an event that makes a profit for the organisation. The PSA will honour the contracts for the event venue and other suppliers but without registration money, this will unfortunately lead to a significant financial shortfall in our 2020 budget. Therefore, given the unusual circumstances, if you are able to reclaim the cost of registration with your university insurance or make a donation to the PSA, that would be very welcome and enable us to continue our activities for the coming year.


We would like to thank the PSA staff and Conference Programme Team at the University of Edinburgh who have worked together for over a year to plan what would have been a fantastic slate of events.


Thank you for your continued support and understanding at this very challenging time and we hope to see you in Belfast next year.


Angelia Wilson, PSA Chair

Michelle Doyle Wildman, Chief Executive

The PSA Trustees and Staff Team