The BSA is committed to fostering an environment that is inclusive, tolerant of a diversity of views, perspectives and methodologies, and free from bias, discrimination and intimidation. Accordingly, the BSA is dedicated to promoting a welcoming atmosphere for everyone, regardless of gender, gender identity or expression/assignment, sex, sexual orientation, marital or civil partnership status, disability, physical appearance, body size, race, age, pregnancy or maternity, or belief, religion, or social or economic status.
In line with the Good Practice Policy recommendations of the British Philosophical Association and the Society of Women in Philosophy, we have adopted several policies and initiatives to address the impact that social status, economic status and protected characteristics can have on an individual’s ability to participate in academic activities. The BSA’s Equity and Diversity Committee, which is chaired by the President of the Society, is responsible for monitoring and improving our policies.
Policies and Initiatives
Policy on Harassment and Unwelcoming Behaviour
This policy is applicable to participants at the Annual Conference and to members of the BSA Trustees Committee when representing the Society, along with a complaints procedure. For more information, please consult our Harassment Policy and online Complaints Form.
The BSA organises one conference per year. Each year we work to improve the diversity of the programme. The Conference Chairs take diversity into account both in organising the Programme Committee and in choosing keynote speakers. Submitted papers are refereed anonymously (with identities concealed from the Conference Chairs as well as referees), while proposals for symposia are required to follow the BPA/SWIP Good Practice Policy recommendations. We further encourage organisers of symposia to take underrepresented social identities into account. In addition, we provide accessibility information for all participants and follow the Good Practice Guidelines for chairing sessions.
To ensure that the Conference is accessible, we provide detailed information about the venue and have set aside funding to assist those whose needs would otherwise not be met. More information is available on the Accessibility tab of the Conference web page.
Our Undergraduate Diversity Initiative provides funding for UK undergraduates from underrepresented groups to attend the BSA Annual Conference. The funding covers registration, accommodation, meals and travel within the UK. Students have postgraduate members to guide them at the Conference. More information is available on the Undergraduate Diversity tab of the Conference web page.
The New Horizons Award is given for the best paper submitted to the Annual Conference by a member of a group traditionally underrepresented in philosophical aesthetics. The winner receives a £1000 honorarium and a travel grant of up to £1000 to attend the conference, and is encouraged to revise the paper for submission to the British Journal of Aesthetics. More information is available on the New Horizons web page.
The BSA provides funding for events and activities in aesthetics within the UK, including Small Grants, grants for the Annual BSA Postgraduate Conference, and grants for the Connections and Synergy Conferences. It is a condition of receiving conference funding that event organisers follow the BPA/SWIP Good Practice Guidelines for conferences. Organisers are also asked to encourage members of underrepresented groups to submit papers/abstracts and to take diversity into account when making decisions for inclusion in the programme. More information is available on our Funding pages.
The BSA awards an annual Postdoctoral Fellowship in philosophical aesthetics. Candidates are asked to submit the following materials in anonymised versions: CV, degree transcripts, research proposal, writing sample and covering letter. These are considered prior to looking at the non-anonymised reference letters and letters of support from the host institution. More information is available on our Postdoctoral Award page.
The BSA runs a biennial essay prize competition for early career researchers in aesthetics. Submissions are considered through an anonymised review process. Author identities are concealed from the Prize Committee Chair as well as from the Committee members. More information is available on our Essay Prize page.
The BSA is responsible for the British Journal of Aesthetics (published by OUP) and Debates in Aesthetics (published online). Editors are required to follow the BPA/SWIP Good Practice Guidelines for academic journals. Policies to promote diversity among authors and readers are continually reviewed.
The BSA is run by a Trustees Committee. Trustees are elected by the Society membership to three-year terms. Trustees elect three Officers—a President, Vice President and Treasurer—whose appointment is ratified at the Annual General Meeting; their terms are also three years. Non-voting members of the committee include the BJA editor(s), the DiA editors, a Manager and a Website Manager. The Trustees Committee also appoints unelected members for particular tasks/sub-committees as needed, such as the Equity and Diversity Committee.
The BSA Trustees Committee has the following sub-committees: Conference, Grants, Postdoctoral Award, Equity and Diversity, and (biennially) Essay Prize. Each sub-committee is chaired by a Trustee and includes Trustee members; some sub-committees also include non-trustee members.
BSA Officers and Trustees encourage applicants from a range of backgrounds to apply for membership of the Trustees Committee. Diversity is also taken into account when appointing members for particular tasks/sub-committees.
The Equity and Diversity Committee, currently chaired by the BSA President, is responsible for checking that this policy is enacted, for considering whether it is adequate for its purpose, and for proposing revisions to the Trustees. Suggestions for improvements to this policy are welcome. Please contact the BSA Manager, Caroline Auty, at firstname.lastname@example.org. The latest version of this policy will always be available to download from our website.
This policy has been adapted from the Equalities Policy of the British Society for Ethical Theory, with their permission.