Right royal appointment

May 16, 2013

It is regrettable that a publication written mainly for academics should choose to cover The Sunday Times’ version of the facts about the election of the Duke of York as a royal fellow of the Royal Society (The week in higher education, 9 May). Eighty-five per cent of those who voted supported the election, and while the ballot paper did only have a box to vote “yes” to confirm the nomination of the society’s council - the elected representatives of the fellowship - explicit instructions were also sent to every fellow on how to register a “no” vote.

Your reporting of The Sunday Times article made reference to the fact that only 11 per cent of fellows supported the nomination, but neglected to mention that only 1.8 per cent opposed it. As is common with democratic elections, many of the electorate chose not to vote, but it is ridiculous to use this fact to speculate on their intentions.

Prince Andrew was nominated for the distinct category of royal fellow on the basis of his support for British science (and young scientists in particular) and for his work to improve the links between academic researchers and industry. These areas are vital if we are to secure the long-term success of science in the UK.

Martyn Poliakoff
Vice-president
The Royal Society

You've reached your article limit

Register to continue

Registration is free and only takes a moment. Once registered you can read a total of 3 articles each month, plus:

  • Sign up for the editor's highlights
  • Receive World University Rankings news first
  • Get job alerts, shortlist jobs and save job searches
  • Participate in reader discussions and post comments
Register

Have your say

Log in or register to post comments

Featured Jobs

Post-doctoral Research Associate in Chemistry

University Of Western Australia

PACE Data Support Officer

Macquarie University - Sydney Australia

Associate Lecturer in Nursing

Central Queensland University
See all jobs

Most Commented

women leapfrog. Vintage

Robert MacIntosh and Kevin O’Gorman offer advice on climbing the career ladder

Mitch Blunt illustration (23 March 2017)

Without more conservative perspectives in the academy, lawmakers will increasingly ignore and potentially defund social science, says Musa al-Gharbi

Michael Parkin illustration (9 March 2017)

Cramming study into the shortest possible time will impoverish the student experience and drive an even greater wedge between research-enabled permanent staff and the growing underclass of flexible teaching staff, says Tom Cutterham

The University of Aberdeen

Tim Ingold and colleagues at the University of Aberdeen have created a manifesto that they hope will preserve higher education's true values

Interactive app at natural history museum

If the outcomes of ‘active learning’ are so much better than those for traditional lectures, why stick with the old format? asks Simone Buitendijk