An engineering model of Ariel 1 hangs in the Society's atrium. This was the first satellite launched as a result of international collaboration (© PSP Rare)
The Royal Society is a self-governing Fellowship of many of the world’s most distinguished scientists drawn from all areas of science, engineering, and medicine.
The Society’s fundamental purpose, reflected in its founding Charters of the 1660s, is to recognise, promote, and support excellence in science and to encourage the development and use of science for the benefit of humanity.
The Society has played a part in some of the most fundamental, significant, and life-changing discoveries in scientific history and Royal Society scientists continue to make outstanding contributions to science in many research areas.
The Royal Society is the national Academy of science in the UK, and its core is its Fellowship and Foreign Membership, supported by a dedicated staff in London and elsewhere. The Fellowship comprises the most eminent scientists of the UK, Ireland and the Commonwealth.
A major activity of the Society is identifying and supporting the work of outstanding scientists. The Society supports researchers through its early and senior career schemes, innovation and industry schemes, and other schemes.
The Society facilitates interaction and communication among scientists via its discussion meetings, and disseminates scientific advances through its journals. The Society also engages beyond the research community, through independent policy work, the promotion of high quality science education, and communication with the public.