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View from the BSI President

headshot of Tracy Hussell

Here, Prof Tracy Hussell reflects on her first year as BSI President, the wider work of the Society and discusses some of her highlights as well as hopes for the future of the BSI. 

My first year as BSI President has flown by! During this time, I have been working closely with the BSI Trustees, committees, our membership and BSI staff team to advance the Society’s mission. I am proud of the steps we have taken together to continue supporting our community and to raise the impact of immunology on health.

Our Regional & Affinity Groups have run a full programme of activities with a huge amount of enthusiasm, dedication and expertise. They really are the lifeblood of the Society and are invaluable to connect immunologists within local communities and around specific areas in the field. One highlight for me is the recently launched BSI Teaching Affinity Group as an important forum for immunology educators.

A core part of the BSI mission is the invaluable careers support we offer our members, which takes many forms, including a wide array of grants, essential training courses and much-needed recognition of achievements in the sector. This year, we continued to award an outstanding number of grants for varied career development opportunities through our flexible Career Enhancing Grants and for help with travel costs to conferences, initiatives around public engagement and diversity and inclusion, and more. We also celebrated remarkable individuals and teams shaping the future of immunology with eleven winners being announced in the first BSI Immunology Awards.

All of this wouldn’t be possible without the income we get from our publishing portfolio and our income diversification activities. Our journals have been growing thanks to the expertise and insight of the Editors-in-Chief and Editorial Boards and the important support from our members submitting their work and sharing the exciting research published. With big milestones in indexing journeys for our newer Open Access journals Immunotherapy Advances and Discovery Immunology (such as the Directory of Open Access Journals and PubMed Central), and our established journal Clinical & Experimental Immunology showing a robust number of papers, downloads and citations, it is as important as ever that we continue to consolidate their positions as key publications in the field.

With 2023 nearly ending, I want to take this opportunity to thank all of our wonderful members and immunology community – you continue to inspire me with your hard work and dedication driving scientific discovery and making a positive impact on health. I also want to share a message of encouragement for the future. Your substantial efforts transforming immunology do not go unnoticed and we must keep supporting each other as a strong community. Looking forward, we need immunology to maintain its position as an important field, both by retaining the budget from funding boards with a strong number of applications and by recognising the quality work of our fellow immunologists when reviewing it. The BSI Congress and the BSI Clinical Immunology Professional Network (BSI-CIPN) Conference are in the next few days in Belfast, and this is our chance to come together, renew our enthusiasm and support, and keep developing fruitful collaborations.

Next year is going to be full of fantastic BSI work elevating the profile of immunology and boosting careers. I am passionate about supporting career progression across the full range of immunology, and I am excited about the potential of the BSI-CIPN to strengthen the support provided to clinical immunology. The BSI is also providing amazing training opportunities for immunologists to develop skills and confidence, for example in bioinformatics with our highly rated courses with the Glasgow Bioinformatic Core, and through our Patient and Public Involvement (PPI) training.

These are just a few highlights, with many more from the past year in our Annual Review, and many more activities planned for 2024. Please take a look and join me in reminiscing on all the wonderful work the BSI and our members have carried out, and in looking forward to a new year full of scientific discoveries, connections across all sectors of immunology and invaluable moments with other members of our friendly community along the way. If you are coming to Belfast, do come and talk to me at the BSI stand and share your ideas for how the BSI can best support you at our Annual General Meeting.


Tracy Hussell
British Society for Immunology