Russell Group sign Leiden Statement on the social sciences and humanities

21 November 2014

Russell Group highlights importance of the social sciences and humanities

The Russell Group has joined with other global universities in support of research and education in the humanities and social sciences. At a meeting held at Leiden University, the eight groups representing the world’s foremost research universities have committed themselves to:

  • making the case for strong funding and support of humanities and social sciences research
  • supporting the humanities and social sciences within their institutions
  • highlighting the significant contributions that the humanities and social sciences make to national and global wellbeing
  • ensuring that the benefits of humanities and social sciences research and education programs flow out to the wider community
  • facilitating international co-operation in the humanities and social sciences 
  • advancing global research collaborations including interdisciplinary approaches to global societal challenges in partnership with engineering and the sciences.

These shared aims are set out in the Leiden Statement on the role of the social sciences and humanities in the global research landscape.

Speaking ahead of the signing of the Leiden Statement, Dr Wendy Piatt, Director General of the Russell Group, said:

“Social sciences and humanities research can promote vital understanding of human motivation and social change and complement the scientific disciplines in finding solutions to global problems like climate change or energy and food security. This research helps us to understand human behaviour, expression and society, with students and scholars of these subjects taking this important knowledge into the workplace, into charities and into government.  

“Russell Group universities are at the forefront of social sciences and humanities research and education in the UK and internationally. Adequate and flexible funding from Government for research in these fields is vital to continuing and building on this success.

“We look forward to forging even more links with other leading universities around the world through this declaration.” 

The other signatories to the Statement are the Association of American Universities (AAU), the U15 (Canada), the Association of East Asian Research Universities (AEARU), the C9 League in China, the Hong Kong 3, Research University 11 (RU11) in Japan, the Group of Eight in Australia, and the League of European Research Universities (LERU).

Leiden Statement

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