The expanding nature of our international relations programme supports the UK and Irish physics community to develop opportunities for international collaboration.

The programme promotes the value physics can bring to solving global challenges. We do this by:

  • supporting organisations in other countries to develop a future generation of STEM entrepreneurs
  • strengthening the influence of our physics community through international partnerships, particularly with national physical societies, to the UK and other governments around the world
  • supporting the future strength of the physics community by providing a platform to support researchers and students from around the world to network and collaborate with each other
  • providing value to our international members through grants, awards, discounts to attend international conferences and digital content on the latest advances in physics.

Supporting STEM entrepreneurs

Future STEM Business Leaders programme

We support partners in Tanzania to develop skills that will enable school students to apply their scientific training to solve community problems through the creation of science-based business. Through the training, students can:

  • discover opportunities beyond the scope of traditional pathways
  • develop their business knowledge and how it can be applied to their education
  • develop a broad range of skills to enhance their career prospects.

Find out more about the Future STEM Business Leaders programme.

International partnerships

Strengthening the voice and influence of our physics community

The value of UK and Irish physics beyond our national borders gives us an important role to play in maintaining the strength of the discipline. We are able to do that through our relationships with other organisations. We also provide the UK and Irish physics community with a place to explore challenges and areas of potential collaboration.

There are occasions where we work closely with the UK, Irish and other governments to provide advice on the physics landscape. We are also a member of several international physics organisations that have regional and international leadership roles. These organisations, often associated closely with pan-scientific unions, provide a place for an international community of scientists and engineers to collaborate and shape the direction of the discipline of physics. We are a member of the:

We work closely with national physical societies to ensure strong bilateral discussions can take place on areas of mutual interest.

Enhancing scientific relations and improving communication between physicists across the world

Members of a national physical society in the country where they live or work can attend international conferences organised by the IOP at the same rate as IOP members. Find out more about international events organised by IOP and our members.

Supporting students and early career physicists

Opportunities to get involved

We provide opportunities for UK and Irish student members to engage with international bodies and network with fellow physicists to advance scientific knowledge. To support this, we partner with the International Association for Physics Students to run annual events. Find out more on our events page. 

The opportunity to become a Young Minds section within the European Physical Society is available to all our affiliated societies. Learn more about how to become an IOP affiliated society.

IOP grants

To support researchers at the start of their careers we offer the following grants:

  • The Research Student’s Conference Fund  provides financial support for PhD students that are members to attend international meetings or major national meetings.
  • The CR Barber Trust Fund  is for our members in the early stages of their career who want to attend an overseas conference.
  • The Early Careers Researchers Fund  is for researchers at the start of their careers who want to visit international facilities. This fund can also be used to attend international meetings.
  • The Carer's fund  is for members who have difficulty attending international events because of the cost of caring for dependants while they are away.

Our members also enjoy reciprocal rates to submit papers and attend meetings organised by the American Physical Society and the Canadian Association of Physicists, among others.

IOP Publishing

IOP Publishing gives scientists all over the world a way to communicate their research and find out about the latest developments in their field. We have partner relationships with more than 30 international societies. Research published with us is read in almost every country in the world. Our channels include:

  • our journals
  • ebooks
  • magazines
  • conferences proceedings and websites.

Our pioneering open access approach means that we provide free and very low-cost access to scientific research in more than 40 low- and middle-income countries.

Providing value to our international members

International member grant

The international member grant supports our overseas members (outside the UK and Ireland) who want to:

  • run events in partnership with their national physical societies
  • arrange networking events for physicists in the country where they live
  • run outreach activities in the community
  • arrange anything else that would be of benefit to the development and/or promotion of physics in the country where they live.

We make £1,000 available twice a year (April and September). There is a maximum of £500 for each activity. Members are welcome to apply for the grant each time it opens. They will, however, be required to present a different idea.

To apply, members submit an application form and outline the type of activity with details on how the funds will be spent.

After the event, members send us an activity report of not more than 500 words. We ask for photographs and/or videos with the activity report to promote the work our members do with this grant.

Find out more about the international member grant.

International awards

Our annual awards celebrate the best of physics. They reward researchers for ground-breaking work and help to inspire the next generation of physicists.

Our most prestigious award, the Isaac Newton Medal and prize, is awarded for world-leading contributions to physics by any person of any nationality. We also award medals jointly with other international societies. These are known as the international bilateral awards.

We run bilateral international awards to reward researchers for innovative work, including the:

  • Born Medal and Prize with the German Physical Society
  • Holweck Medal and Prize with the French Physical Society
  • Massey Medal and Prize with the Australian Institute of Physics
  • Occhialini Medal and Prize with the Italian Physical Society.

Find out more about our awards.

Support us

Volunteer opportunities

Are you passionate about the links between STEM and business? Would you like to pass on your knowledge to aspiring entrepreneurs? Are you looking for an opportunity to volunteer?

Become a business mentor to support students on the Future STEM Business Leaders programme

Business mentors support secondary school students to develop business skills in Dar es Salaam. Business mentors must be based in Tanzania. They will be paired with a secondary school to support students with business ideas and advise on business planning.

Business mentors will be asked to commit to the programme between September and December and work with their assigned school during October. At least three visits to the school should be made. Mentors should be available to support students by email, between visits.

All mentors own and/or run a business in Tanzania. Although it is helpful to know about or have an interest in STEM, the mentor’s business knowledge is most important. Read more on the Future STEM Business Leaders programme.

To get involved, email

Funding for members in the UK and overseas

Support and grants

We offer funding to help attend international events and to run activities in the country where you live