Equality, Diversity and Inclusion (EDI) in the social sciences: summary data report

  • Policy & Research

March 2024 

The social sciences make up one of the largest sectors within UK Higher Education (HE). In 2021/22 the sector had a total of 1,232,220 enrolled students and a total of 64,755 academic staff.

This report, produced at the request of the Academy’s member social science societies, draws on 2021/22 HESA data and POLAR4 data to present a top-level summary of equality, diversity and inclusion (EDI) data for the social sciences, for both academic and teaching staff and for student populations in UK higher education.

It presents an overview of selected protected characteristics under the Equality Act 2010, and includes some socio-economic indicators, which allows for comparisons between the social sciences sector and the UK’s total academic staff and student populations to be made, in addition to comparisons between disciplines within the social sciences sector.

The report is a snapshot in time and presents just a selection of the data available and analysed.

It does not set out to analyse discipline level data comprehensively nor to compare individual disciplines systematically, while recognising there are many nuanced differences.

This report is part of the Academy’s programme of EDI work in partnership with the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC). Find out more about other aspects of this work on our EDI hub.

Download the report

For full accessibility features, including alternative text, please download the report as a pdf document.

The individual social science disciplines/study areas covered by this data set include:

  • Anthropology (including Development Studies)
  • Architecture & Built Environment (including Planning)
  • Business & Management (including Finance)
  • Communications, Media & Journalism
  • Economics & Econometrics
  • Education (including Teacher Training)
  • Geography (including Environmental Studies)
  • Health Sciences (social)
  • History (included for economic and social history)
  • Law
  • Politics & International Relations
  • Psychology
  • Social Work (including Social Policy)
  • Sociology
  • Sport Studies, Leisure & Tourism