A learned society (/ˈlɜːrnɪd/; also known as a learned academy, scholarly society, or academic association) is an organisation that exists to promote an academic discipline, profession, or a group of related disciplines such as the arts. Membership may be open to all, may require possession of some qualification, or may be an honour conferred by election.
Most learned societies are non-profit organisations, and many are professional associations. Their activities typically include holding regular conferences for the presentation and discussion of new research results and publishing or sponsoring academic journals in their discipline. Some also act as professional bodies, regulating the activities of their members in the public interest or the collective interest of the membership.
* Description and images provided by
CC-BY-SA 3.0 license