This is a call from Chief Executive, Judith Mudd, for the assistance of members based in academia to help the BSA track and record the affect Covid is having on our discipline.

We need you to tell us how academic departments are being impacted by Covid.

  • Have there been job losses in your department? If yes, please tell us approximately how many staff have been affected.
  • Have there been cuts in short term contracts in your department? If yes, please tell us approximately how many staff have been affected.
  • What impact has Covid had on your workload? Please tell us briefly about the types of additional things you are doing.
  • How is the impact of Covid on HE affecting your health and mental well-being?
  • What unexpected impacts of Covid have you experienced or noticed?

Please send your thoughts and comments *by 9 November* to:

Why do we need this information?

Reports are coming through of departments that are experiencing cutbacks, and our sympathies are with those people who have recently lost their jobs or are under threat of redundancy. The impact on individual lives will be dreadful and any contraction of research or teaching in the discipline is of a matter of deep concern to us, to the many students now at school hoping to go on to study Sociology at university, and for the future of Sociology.

As the national subject association for Sociology, we are the neutral hub of information for the discipline which is regularly consulted by data gathering, umbrella and nominating bodies (e.g. REF, the Academy of Social Science, the exam boards, and civil service departments, such as the DfE) and it is vitally important that we understand, document and report on the impact of Covid on Sociology.

Having the right information is key to our advocacy work on behalf of Sociology.

The BSA maintains the physical and digital archive of the discipline and therefore plays a significant role in documenting the history of the discipline in a way that no other body does. We are preparing an initial summary of the breadth and depth of the impact of Covid for inclusion in the Autumn/Winter issue of Network, our members’ magazine, because Network has a special role in documenting the working lives of sociologists and change in the discipline.

The information that you submit may be included in Network (in an anonymised form) to help us ensure that what happens to Sociology and sociologists during this pandemic does not go unmarked.

A big thank you in advance for your help as we know what a difficult time everyone is going through.

Judith Mudd, Chief Executive of the The British Sociological Association