Honour for Professor Matthew Flinders

Matthew Flinders gives a TEDx talk at the Houses of Parliament: To view, press play then move the time to 21 minutes in.

Professor Matthew Flinders has been elected Chair of one of the world’s largest societies for the study of politics.

With nearly two thousand members, The Political Studies Association (PSA) of the United Kingdom is the second largest learned society for the study of politics in the world and has existed since 1950 to promote the study of politics.

Just after his three-year term formally began on 1 July, Matthew, Director of the Sir Bernard Crick Centre for the Public Understanding of Politics, gave a TEDx talk at the Houses of Parliament entitled ‘Do we have too much democracy?’ You can read more about this in his blog.

Talking about his recent appointment, Matthew said: “This is a real opportunity to shape and direct the discipline that I have been lucky enough to be part of for nearly two decades.

“It's nice to put something back into the profession in this way and it’s also a real honour to have been elected to fill the role. I'm learning a lot about the management and future of higher education and meeting lots of interesting people.

“I’ve already been introduced to a wide range of topics that I never really had to engage with before. This includes issues as varied as contractual negotiations for office space and journal publishing contracts right through to specific cases where researchers have been arrested and imprisoned in foreign countries and the PSA has played a role in campaigning for their release.

“It almost goes without saying that higher education is going through a turbulent period with lots of challenges on the horizon. I think this is particularly true for the social sciences so I am working hard to build relationships with other learned societies and with a range of policy-makers, journalists and politicians – within and beyond the UK.”

Who is the PSA? 60th anniversary video, narrated by Jon Snow: