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The Fellowship


Sir Adrian Smith is President of the Royal Society. He started his five year term on 30 November 2020.

Adrian is a mathematician with particular expertise in the field of Bayesian statistics and was knighted in 2011.

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About the Fellowship

The Royal Society is a self-governing Fellowship made up of the most eminent scientists, engineers and technologists from the UK and the Commonwealth. Fellows and Foreign Members are elected for life through a peer review process on the basis of excellence in science.

There are approximately 1,800 Fellows and Foreign Members, including around 85 Nobel Laureates. Each year up to 73 Fellows and up to 24 Foreign Members are elected from a group of around 800 candidates who are proposed by the existing Fellowship.

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Fellows in the news

Nobel Prize 2022

Svante Pääbo has developed techniques and approaches that allow DNA sequences from archaeological and paleontological remains to be determined.

The Nobel Assembly at Karolinska Institutet has awarded this year’s prize to Svante Pääbo “for his discoveries concerning the genomes of extinct hominin and human evolution”.

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Nobel Prize 2022

Alain Aspect is known for his experiments illuminating the most intriguing properties of quantum mechanics.

The Nobel Prize in Physics 2022 was awarded to Alain, along with John F. Clauser and Anton Zeilinger, “for experiments with entangled photons, establishing the violation of Bell inequalities and pioneering quantum information science”.

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The Royal Society is governed by a Council of Fellows, who are elected by the Fellowship. Find out more about the Officers, Council and Committees who oversee the work of the Society.

How is the Society run?

About the Fellowship

Discover the lives and scientific achievements of former Fellows in our Biographical Memoirs publication. Or find out more about the process of nomination, selection and admission.

How are Fellows and Foreign Members elected?

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