Launched this week, Science, Society and Policy is an exciting new venture from The Royal Society which seeks to address the increasing public and government appetite for accessible policy-related science, in areas such as artificial intelligence and epidemiology.

Sitting within their popular journal - Royal Society Open Science - this new section will provide a venue for researchers to submit their work for publication and will be an open access outlet for readers, whether policymakers or interested members of the public.

Director of the Institute for Policy Research (IPR), Professor Nick Pearce, has been appointed as Subject Editor, responsible for ensuring the section reflects not only the global nature of science but also that the section's content will address questions of global importance. It will have a broad concern with major societal challenges as diverse as public health, socio-economic inequalities, sustainability and biodiversity.

Associate Editors from around the world will join Professor Pearce on the Editorial Board, and be advised by a newly formed Advisory Board including leading figures such as Dame Sally Davies, Sir Michael Marmot, Lord David Willetts, Professor Sheila Jasanoff, Dr Mona Nemer and Head of Science Policy at the Royal Society, Rupert Lewis, as Chair.

On his appointment, Professor Pearce adds:

"The Covid-19 pandemic has made the relationship between scientific expertise and public policymaking much more visible, right around the world. It is a complex relationship, with many different dimensions, but the pandemic has undoubtedly led to a much wider public and political appreciation of the importance of harnessing scientific advances to the challenges humanity faces.

It is therefore opportune that Royal Society Open Science has launched this new subject section. It provides a vehicle for scientists to publish new research on major social and public policy issues, as well as an interdisciplinary forum for dialogue between scholars and a reference point for policy debates. I hope that it becomes known for ground breaking work that is of sustained interest, not just to academic scientists, but to a wider global readership.