Can you help to guide the Social Research Association?


Due to trustee retirements in 2020 we are looking for new trustees, and a Chair, from among the membership.  This is a chance to join a lively and positive group of researchers and help to steer us through challenging times.  

As an educational charity promoting high standards of social research, the SRA provides training courses, events, publications and other resources.  The economic climate during and after Covid-19 calls for innovation and fresh thinking.  We faces challenges, but have strong financial reserves and an active plan - including the ongoing transition of the training and events programme to an online offer.

You can read about our current trustees here.

SRA membership is open to all, and our 1200+ members represent many sectors, research methods and approaches.  We welcome applications from across the membership.  In addition, so that the trustee body is broadly representative, we would also like to hear from members working in central government, for a public body, and as independents.

If you’re interested in applying but are not yet a member, you can join here.

Trustees meets 6 times a year in London (with video-conferencing available), and you’ll be expected to attend, as well as the annual general meeting (usually held at our December annual conference).  Board meetings focus largely on strategic rather than operational issues.  Trustees are unpaid volunteers, whose positions are re-nominated every 2 years, to a maximum of 6 years.  Expenses for meetings etc. are reimbursed.

Each trustee uses their knowledge and experience to help the Board reach sound decisions.  This will involve scrutinising Board papers, leading discussions, focusing on key issues, and providing views and advice. You’ll need to be aware of your legal responsibilities, and the need to act in accordance with Charity Commission guidance, as explained in ‘The essential trustee’

New Chair

Our Chair David Johnson retires at the end of 2020, so we are also looking for a new Chair of Trustees.  The Chair’s role, which on average takes 6-7 hours per month, encompasses that of a trustee, as well as:

  • Chairing trustee meetings: encouraging open discussion, helping the group reflect on risks and implications of decisions, summarising views and seeking consensus
  • Supporting the Chief Executive (Graham Farrant) as matters arise and on issues of strategic direction
  • Representing the SRA, building links to other organisations and promoting its interests.
  • Ad hoc support (with the Treasurer, Nigel Meager, and the chief executive) on matters that need to be progressed or decided on inbetween trustee meetings
  • Writing an article each quarter for Research Matters magazine
  • Chairing the AGM and introducing the conference
  • Signing off the annual report

To apply, either to be a trustee or trustee and Chair, please complete this online form.  Deadline: Friday 31 July 2020.

The selection will be made by a subgroup of existing trustees, with reference to the criteria in the online application form.

Queries? For an informal chat, please contact the chief executive, Graham Farrant:, 0207 255 0695

And if you know someone suitable who may like to apply, please encourage them!