The Royal Society of Chemistry (RSC) is an amalgam of what used to be many different societies, and has a long and rich history going back to Faraday (who incidentally, never received any degree), and it is considered a learned society, like the ACS in the USA, of which I am a long-standing member.

I have perused the RSC website extensively and I possess the necessary education and experience to join as a Associate Member, but one of the requisites when completing the application is that I name a referee, optimally someone who is already a member.

I do not know anyone who is a member as I live in the U.S.A. and simply have not crossed paths with such a person who would know me well enough. I am aware there are offices in the US (Philadelphia) and there is not categorical statement that you must be of a certain nationality, so how do "Americans" apply?

Does anyone know how this process works?

  • 2
    Well, if having a referee is one of the requirements, then the answer to "how can one join without a referee?" is simply "one can't". Maybe your real question is "how do I find a referee?" Commented Oct 2, 2016 at 23:15
  • 1
    If the application says "optimally someone who is already a member" perhaps they would accept as referee a senior member of the ACS who knows you and your work. Commented Oct 3, 2016 at 0:22

1 Answer 1


From the help page of the Royal Society of Chemistry:

Who can be a referee for my membership application?

Preferably a member of the Royal Society of Chemistry, however if you do not know a member who can act as referee, a member of a similar professional body can provide a reference. In some cases, a reference from a senior colleague, for example, your line manager or head of department will be acceptable.

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