Society of Biology

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Society of Biology
Society of Biology.svg
Logo of the Society of Biology
Predecessor Institute of Biology and the Biosciences Federation
Formation 2009
Type NGO
Headquarters Charles Darwin House
Region served United Kingdom
Membership 14,000 individual members
Official language English
President Dame Nancy Rothwell
Chief Executive Mark Downs

The Society of Biology is a learned society in the United Kingdom created to advance the interests of biology in academia, industry, education, and research. Formed in 2009 by the merger of the Biosciences Federation and the Institute of Biology, the society has around 14,000 individual members, and over 90 member organisations.[1] In addition to engaging the public on matters related to the life sciences, the Society seeks to develop the profession and to guide the development of related policies. Associate Members may use the letters AMSB, Members may use the letters MSB after their name, and Fellows may use FSB.[2]

The society is a member of the Science Council, and is licensed to award Chartered Scientist (CSci),[3] Registered Scientist (RSci), and Registered Science Technician (RSciTech) status to suitably qualified members. It is also able to award the status of Chartered Biologist (CBiol).[4]

It runs two competitions for schools, the British Biology Olympiad and Biology Challenge, which are designed to challenge Britain's most talented students and reward them for their success.[5] The four winners of the British Biology Olympiad go forward to compete in the International Biology Olympiad.

The Society of Biology supports university students and early-career researchers with careers advice, travel grants and Life Sciences Careers Conferences. In 2012 it developed a Degree Accreditation Programme to promote high standards in the biosciences and highlight degrees which provide graduates with the skills required for academic and industry careers.[6]

The Society has five Special Interest Groups: the Animal Science Group,[7] UK Biology Competitions,[8] Natural Capital Initiative,[9] the UK Plant Sciences Federation,[10] and Heads of University Biosciences.[11]

The Society publishes a bi-monthly magazine The Biologist.[12]

The society organised the first ever Biology Week in 2012, and this has been followed by Biology Week 2013.[13] Biology Week takes place in October and aims to inspire people of all ages and backgrounds with biology. It involves a series of events for scientists, schools and members of the public.

The Society runs two citizen science projects. Since 2012 it has been collecting records of flying ants as part of the Flying Ant Survey.[14] In 2013, a House Spider Survey was started to report the sightings of Tegenaria spiders using an App. Both provide ecological data sets.[15]

The Society of Biology has a Royal Charter and is a registered charity. The first and current president of the society is Dame Nancy Rothwell (University of Manchester).[1]


  1. ^ a b "Society of Biology membership grades". Society of Biology. Retrieved 11 November 2013. 
  2. ^ "Society of Biology membership grades". Retrieved 11 November 2013. 
  3. ^ "Science Council". Retrieved 11 November 2013. 
  4. ^ "Chartered Status". Retrieved 11 November 2013. 
  5. ^ "Society of Biology competitions". Retrieved 22 May 2013. 
  6. ^ "Degree Accreditation". Retrieved 11 November 2013. 
  7. ^ "Animal Science Group". Retrieved 11 November 2013. 
  8. ^ "UK Biology Competitions". Retrieved 11 November 2013. 
  9. ^ "Natural Capital Initiative". Retrieved 11 November 2013. 
  10. ^ "UK Plant Sciences Federation". Retrieved 11 November 2013. 
  11. ^ "HUBS". Retrieved 11 November 2013. 
  12. ^ "The Biologist". 
  13. ^ "Biology Week". Retrieved 11 November 2013. 
  14. ^ "Flying Ant Survey". Retrieved 11 November 2013. 
  15. ^ "BBC: house spider survey". Retrieved 11 November 2013. 

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