Photo by Markus Spiske from Pexels

The Social Policy Association is a learned society and charity. Our purpose is to advance the teaching, research, and dissemination of knowledge in the field of social policy, and to represent the interests of our members.

In fulfilling our purpose, the SPA Executive Committee is committed to a number of values including equity, inclusivity, integrity, transparency, care and collegiality.  We also seek to promote diversity given the context of structural barriers and to support environmental sustainability given the context of climate change.

The SPA Executive will seek to embed these values into all our work including our Executive meetings, our publications, our annual conference, our ad hoc events and other activities. We will challenge ourselves to uphold these values and continue to learn how we can best act in support of them.

We seek the support of members in this endeavour and encourage members, and others, to contact the Chair and/or the Vice Chair to discuss this further if they wish to do so.

SPA Executive Actions in Support of our Values

In support of these values, the SPA Executive will take a range of actions, many of which reflect overlapping values.  The following list is therefore indicative only but helps to bring our values to life through concrete actions.  The SPA Executive therefore will:

Integrity and transparency

  • Provide a summary of each of the key issues discussed and agreed at its Exec meetings on SPA online so that members are kept informed
  • Seek to minimise the use of SPA income on Exec expenses (eg standard class fare, public transport, modest accommodation where required)
  • Comply with the statement of ethics for the SPA Executive, drawn up in 2018 and accessed here:

Inclusivity, equity and diversity

  • Take forward our action plan that will promote greater diversity in social policy education and research in relation to ‘race’ and ethnicity; and support other under-represented groups
  • Support PGR and early career members
  • Pay (at least) a real living wage for any work carried out for the SPA Executive
  • Ensure equal opportunities to apply for any work or any other opportunities offered by the SPA

Care and collegiality

  • Expect the highest standards of respectful conduct at our Exec meetings, conference and other events. All our events should be welcoming, inclusive and harassment-free
  • Be mindful of the pressures often placed on Exec members and other members and seek to reduce rather than increase such pressures
  • Encourage kindness and mutual support between colleagues

Environmental sustainability

  • Reduce the use of flights and private transportation (including taxis) on SPA business
  • Trial the use of different approaches/software to support virtual meetings and thus reduce carbon emissions via transport
  • Consider the use of carbon offsetting schemes
  • Reduce the production and distribution of paper on SPA business
  • Increase the use of vegetarian/more sustainable food sources at SPA events
  • Reduce the use of plastic at SPA events
  • Reduce waste at SPA events