Our policies

Equality and Diversity Policy Statement

SAMS/SAMS Enterprise promotes a positive culture for working to which every member of staff contributes and within which they are able to develop to their full potential.

It is central to SAMS/SAMS Enterprise to ensure that all members of SAMS/SAMS Enterprise staff treat each other with respect, regardless of their age, disability, gender (including transgender), marital status, pregnancy, race, religion or belief, sex or sexual orientation.

SAMS/SAMS Enterprise will embed equality and diversity across all its work. To achieve this all employees have a part to play.

SAMS/SAMS Enterprise fosters a culture of freedom of thought and expression and this must be done within a framework of mutual respect.


Disability Statement

SAMS/SAMS Enterprise is committed to taking all reasonable steps/adjustments to anticipate and meet the needs of staff, applicants, visitors and others with disabilities using SAMS/SAMS Enterprise facilities and/or services. SAMS/SAMS Enterprise will ensure - so far as practicable - that all necessary adjustments are made to ensure that all sections of our community can benefit from the full range of services we provide.

If you are disabled or become disabled, we encourage you to tell us about your condition so that we can support you as appropriate.

UHI British Sign Language Plan 2024-30


Recruitment and Selection

Recruitment, promotion, and other selection exercises such as redundancy selection will be conducted on the basis of merit, against objective criteria that avoid discrimination. Shortlisting should be done by more than one person and with the involvement of the Human Resources Department, where possible. Our recruitment procedures should be reviewed regularly to ensure that individuals are treated on the basis of their relevant merits and abilities.

Vacancies should generally be advertised to a diverse section of the labour market. Advertisements should avoid stereotyping or using wording that may discourage particular groups from applying. All adverts should include a short policy statement on equal opportunities and a copy of this policy will be made available on request.

We take steps to ensure that our vacancies are advertised to a diverse labour market.

Job applicants should not be asked questions which might suggest an intention to discriminate on grounds of a Protected Characteristic. For example, applicants should not be asked whether they are pregnant or planning to have children.

Job applicants should not be asked about health or disability before a job offer is made. There are limited exceptions which should only be used with the approval of the Human Resources Department. For example: Questions necessary to establish if an applicant can perform an intrinsic part of the job (subject to any reasonable adjustments).

Questions to establish if an applicant is fit to attend an assessment or any reasonable adjustments that may be needed at interview or assessment.

Positive action to recruit disabled persons.

Equal opportunities monitoring (which will not form part of the selection or decision-making process).

Where necessary, job offers can be made conditional on a satisfactory medical check.

We are required by law to ensure that all employees are entitled to work in the UK. Assumptions about immigration status should not be made based on appearance or apparent nationality. All prospective employees, regardless of nationality, must be able to produce original documents (such as a passport) before employment starts, to satisfy current immigration legislation. The list of acceptable documents is available from the Human Resources Department or UK Visas and Immigration.

To ensure that this policy is operating effectively, and to identify groups that may be underrepresented or disadvantaged in our organisation, we monitor applicants' ethnic group, gender, disability, sexual orientation, religion and age as part of the recruitment procedure. Provision of this information is voluntary and it will not adversely affect an individual's chances of recruitment or any other decision related to their employment. The information is removed from applications before shortlisting, and kept in an anonymised format solely for the purposes stated in this policy. Analysing this data helps us take appropriate steps to avoid discrimination and improve equality and diversity.

SAMS UHI Gender Action Plan 2017



The SAMS Group (henceforth referred to as SAMS) is Scotland’s largest marine independent marine research institute whose teams can sometimes operate in challenging conditions. SAMS’ management therefore places the highest priority on the health and safety of its staff and those affected by its activities and is committed to providing strong and proactive health and safety leadership.

SAMS acknowledges the responsibility placed on it by the Health & Safety at Work etc Act 1974 and is committed to achieving and maintaining high levels of health and safety standards that will as a minimum comply with all relevant legislation. This commitment extends to its overseas activities and SAMS will, where possible, apply the same high standards here as it does in the United Kingdom.

SAMS aims to demonstrate compliance and continual improvement in health & safety management and performance to provide a safe, healthy and supportive environment and reduce accidents, injuries and work related ill health to those who may be affected by its activities and / or premises.

To this end, SAMS will:

- identify the hazards and assess risks created by its activities and will, so far as is reasonably practicable, eliminate or control these through a hierarchical approach, developing suitable policies and procedures to enable this;

- ensure that people who may have an influence on the management system are provided with the necessary information and/or training to allow them to contribute effectively;

- protect the health of staff and others who may be affected by work-related activities, including those who work remotely from the main SAMS’ site or who may be otherwise impacted by the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic;

- ensure that there is effective supervision of all workers;

- maintain its occupational health and safety management system in line with the requirements of ISO45001:2018, keeping procedures under review to minimize the risks presented to the system by the ongoing pandemic.

SAMS is also committed to providing effective routes of consultation and communication with its employees, students and others who may be affected by this policy.

The implementation of the policy is the responsibility of the Director and the SAMS Board. However, SAMS recognises that staff and student awareness and engagement with this policy is pivotal to its success. This policy will be communicated within SAMS and will be made available to interested parties, including relevant contractors, clients, partners and others who can have an influence on the success of its health and safety management system.

This Policy will be monitored and reviewed at least annually by the Safety Health and Environment (SHE) Advisor.

Professor Nicholas JP Owens


Diana Murray CBE

Chair of Board


The Scottish Association for Marine Science Group (henceforth referred to as SAMS) is Scotland’s largest and oldest independent marine science organisation, delivering science for a productive and sustainably managed marine environment through innovative research, education and enterprise.

SAMS is committed to the protection of the environment including the prevention of pollution and the reduction of its negative environmental impacts. SAMS also commits to the continual improvement of its environmental management system to enhance environmental performance.

SAMS has identified the key environmental aspects and impacts from its activities which has allowed it to prioritise key areas and provide a framework for the setting of objectives. These areas are:

- Maximise the positive impacts of SAMS’ activities through collaboration and engagement, to influence policy makers, support sustainable business models and educate the public;

- To reduce SAMS’ negative impacts on climate change through the development and implementation of a Carbon Management Plan;

- To ensure that all of SAMS’ compliance obligations are met, including those arising through legislation and the requirements of its partners and other interested parties;

- To minimise pollution through the assessment and control of emissions to air and discharges to water, including those potentially arising through the unintentional release of hazardous substances;

- To continue to embed educational activities that promote the awareness and protection of the environment to staff, students and external interested parties;

- To reduce SAMS’ use of natural resources through sustainable procurement practices, education and efficiency savings through the utilisation of existing and developing technologies or otherwise minimising the negative impacts of using such resources;

- To adopt the principles of a waste management hierarchy to reduce the generation of wastes and maximise recycling opportunities.

The implementation of the Environment Policy is the responsibility of the Director and the SAMS Board. However, SAMS recognises that staff and student awareness and engagement with this policy is pivotal to its success. This policy will be communicated within SAMS and will be made available to interested parties, including relevant contractors, clients, partners and others who can have an influence on the success of its environmental management system.


Professor Nicholas JP Owens



Diana Murray CBE

Chair of the Board

Anti-corruption and bribery policy

These are the summary extracts of our 11-page policy:

It is our policy to conduct all of our business in an honest and ethical manner. We take a zero-tolerance approach to bribery and corruption and are committed to acting professionally, fairly and with integrity in all our business dealings and relationships wherever we operate and implementing and enforcing effective systems to counter bribery.

We will uphold all laws relevant to countering bribery and corruption [in all the jurisdictions in which we operate]. However, we remain bound by the laws of the UK, including the Bribery Act 2010, in respect of our conduct both at home and abroad.

We have identified that the following are particular risks for our business:

  • >Contract work with third parties where the perceived risk increases as we move from mainly public sector clients to private sector contracts and outside the UK where the operating environment is different from that with which we are familiar.  These are of course the very areas in which SAMS and SAMS Enterprise seeks to grow the business.
  • >Education is another area where HEIs have experienced issues and we need to consider this a risk area.

To address those risks we have

  • >reviewed our policies that cover relationships with third parties and third party organisations including; Hospitality and Gifts, Conflict of Interest and Fraud
  • >set up procedures derived from those policies including Registers of Hospitality, Gifts and Interests
  • >set up procedures for staff to report incidents or concerns and for those concerns to be properly implemented either by the management chain or if necessary through the operation of the SAMS whistle-blowers’ charter
  • >revised SAMS and SAMS Enterprise standard terms and conditions with clients and subcontractors to reflect this policy and the requirements of the 2010 Bribery Act
  • >set up training for staff to make them aware of risk using examples

This policy applies to all individuals working at all levels and grades, including senior managers, officers, directors, employees (whether permanent, fixed-term or temporary), consultants, contractors, trainees, seconded staff, homeworkers, casual workers and agency staff, volunteers, interns, agents, sponsors, or any other person associated with us, or any of our subsidiaries or their employees, wherever located.

A bribe is an inducement or reward offered, promised or provided in order to gain any commercial, contractual, regulatory or personal advantage.

The giving or receipt of gifts is not prohibited, if the following requirements are met:

  • >it is not made with the intention of influencing a third party to obtain or retain business or a business advantage, or to reward the provision or retention of business or a business advantage, or in explicit or implicit exchange for favours or benefits;
  • >it complies with SAMS Gifts and Hospitality Policy which can be found on the Intranet at SAMS Gifts & Hospitality Policy.pdf)
  • >it complies with local law;
  • >it is given in the Company (SAMS or a subsidiary) name, not in your name;
  • >it does not include cash or a cash equivalent (such as gift certificates or vouchers);
  • >it is appropriate in the circumstances. For example, in the UK it is customary for small gifts to be given at Christmas time;
  • >taking into account the reason for the gift, it is of an appropriate type and value and given at an appropriate time;
  • >it is given openly, not secretly; and
  • >gifts should not be offered to, or accepted from, government officials or representatives, or politicians or political parties.

The practice of giving business gifts varies between countries and regions and what may be normal and acceptable in one region may not be in another. The test to be applied is whether in all the circumstances the gift or hospitality is reasonable and justifiable. The intention behind the gift should always be considered.


It is not acceptable for you (or someone on your behalf) to:

  • >give, promise to give, or offer, a payment, gift or hospitality with the expectation or hope that a business advantage will be received, or to reward a business advantage already given;
  • >give, promise to give, or offer, a payment, gift or hospitality to a government official, agent or representative to "facilitate" or expedite a routine procedure;
  • >accept payment from a third party that you know or suspect is offered with the expectation that it will obtain a business advantage for them;
  • >accept a gift or hospitality from a third party if you know or suspect that it is offered or provided with an expectation that a business advantage will be provided by us in return;
  • >threaten or retaliate against another worker who has refused to commit a bribery offence or who has raised concerns under this policy; or
  • >engage in any activity that might lead to a breach of this policy.

SAMS membership: GDPR privacy notice

The purpose of this document

The Scottish Association for Marine Science (SAMS) is committed to protecting the privacy and security of your personal information.

This privacy notice describes how we collect and use personal information about you during and after your relationship with us, in accordance with the General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR).

Under the terms of the GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation) our reason for collecting data is ‘Consent’, whereby you consent to us collecting certain personal data in order for us to effectively meet our commitments of our membership relationship.

SAMS is a ‘data controller’. This means that we are responsible for deciding how we hold and use personal information about you. We are required under data protection legislation to notify you of the information contained in this privacy notice.

This notice applies to current and former members. This notice does not form part of any contract to provide services. We may update this notice at any time.

It is important that you read this notice, together with any other privacy notice we may provide on specific occasions when we are collecting or processing personal information about you, so that you are aware of how and why we are using such information.


Data protection principles

We shall comply with data protection law. This says that the personal information we hold about you must be:

  • >Used lawfully, fairly and in a transparent way;
  • >Collected only for valid purposes that we have clearly explained to you and not used in any way that is incompatible with those purposes;
  • >Relevant to the purposes we have told you about and limited only to those purposes;
  • >Accurate and kept up to date;
  • >Kept only as long as necessary for the purposes we have told you about; and
  • >Kept securely.


The kind of information we hold about you

Personal data, or personal information, means any information about an individual from which they are identifiable. It does not include data where the identity has been removed (anonymous data).

There are "special categories" of more sensitive personal data that require greater protection.

We may collect, store, and use the following categories of personal information about you:

  • >Information you provide when applying to join SAMS such as title, names, address, year of joining, scientific interests, type of membership. 
  • >Information that you provide to us for the purpose of subscribing to our email notifications and/or newsletters (including your name and email address).
  • >Any other relevant data, e.g., ‘membership lapsed’, ‘wrong payment rate’.
  • >Information about your computer and about your visits to and use of SAMS’ website (including length of visit, page views and website navigation paths).
  • >Information relating to any purchases you make of our services or any other transactions that you enter into through our website (including your name, address, telephone number, email address).
  • >Information contained in or relating to any communication that you send to us or send through our website (including the communication content and metadata associated with the communication).
  • >Any other personal information that you choose to send to us.


How your personal information is collected

We typically collect personal information about SAMS Members through the application process. 

Before you disclose to us the personal information of another person, you must obtain that person's consent to both the disclosure and the processing of that personal information in accordance with this policy.


How we shall use information about you

We shall only use your personal information when the law allows us to.  Most commonly, we shall use your personal information in the following circumstances:

  1. Where we need to perform the commitments we have made you.
  2. Where we need to comply with a legal or regulatory obligation.
  3. Where it is necessary for our legitimate interests and your interests and fundamental rights do not override those interests.

We may also use your personal information in the following situations, which are likely to be rare:

  1. Where we need to protect your interests (or someone else's interests).
  2. Where it is needed in the public interest or for official purposes.


Examples of circumstances under which we may use your personal information

Providing you with benefits of direct relevance to your membership of SAMS, e.g.:

  • >sending payment reminders to you
  • >collecting and registering payments from you
  • >sending newsletters and Annual Reviews
  • >notification of Annual General Meeting and Extraordinary General meetings
  • >distribution of Annual Reports and Accounts
  • >notification of exceptional news items
  • >marketing activities (e.g. seminar alerts; public lectures; notification of SAMS open days, Festival of the Sea etc.)
  • >conducting data analysis to review and better understand membership retention and attrition
  • >deal with enquiries and/or complaints made by you

You can inform us at any time if you no longer wish to receive any or specific communications from us.  [Please contact us by email at DPE@sams.ac.uk, or by writing to the Data Privacy Manager.]

We shall not, without your express consent, supply your personal information to any third party for the purpose of their own, or any third parties' direct marketing.


If you fail to provide personal information

If you fail to provide certain information when requested, we may not be able to perform the commitments of our Membership relationship with you: e.g. provision of a defined benefit.


Change of purpose

We shall only use your personal information for the purposes for which we collected it, unless we reasonably consider that we need to use it for another reason and that reason is compatible with the original purpose.

If we need to use your personal information for an unrelated purpose, we shall notify you and we shall explain the legal basis that allows us to do so. 


Data sharing: disclosing your personal information

We may disclose your personal information to any of our officers or agents insofar as reasonably necessary for the purposes set out in this notice.

We may have to share your data with third parties, including third-party service providers.  If so, we require third parties to respect the security of your data and to treat it in accordance with the law.

We may transfer your personal information outside the EU.  If we do, you can expect a similar degree of protection in respect of your personal information.

We may disclose your personal information:

  • >to the extent that we are required to by law;
  • >in connection with any ongoing or prospective legal proceedings;
  • >in order to establish, exercise or defend our legal rights (including providing information to others for the purposes of fraud prevention and reducing credit risk); or
  • >to any person who we reasonably believe may apply to a court or other competent authority for disclosure of that personal information where, in our reasonable opinion, such authority would be reasonably likely to order disclosure of that information.


Transferring information outside the EEA

We may transfer your personal information outside of the European Economic Area (EEA) for the purposes described in this policy. If we do this, we shall do so using one of the adequate safeguards permitted by regulators for transfers of personal data outside of the EEA.

Personal information that you submit for publication on our website may be available, via the internet, around the world. We cannot prevent its use or misuse by others.


Third party websites

Our website includes hyperlinks to, and details of, third party websites, some of which may be hosted outside of the EEA.  We have no control over, and are not responsible for, the privacy policies and practices of third parties.


Data security

We have put in place measures to protect the security of your information. Details of these measures are available upon request from our Data Privacy Manager through DPE@sams.ac.uk

Third parties will only process your personal information on our instructions and where they have agreed to treat the information confidentially and to keep it secure.


Security of personal information

We shall take reasonable technical and organisational precautions to prevent the loss, misuse or alteration of your personal information.

We shall store all the personal information you provide on secure (password- and firewall-protected) servers.  A third party may operate these.

Transmission of information over the internet is inherently insecure, and we cannot guarantee the security of data sent over the internet.

You are responsible for keeping the password you use for accessing our website confidential; we will not ask you for your password (except when you log in to our website).


Financial transactions

All electronic financial transactions entered into through our website will be protected by encryption technology.

Website financial transactions are handled through our payment services provider.  You can review their privacy policy at: https://www.bankofscotland.co.uk/securityandprivacy/privacy/.  We shall share information with our payment services provider only to the extent necessary for the purposes of processing payments you make via our website, refunding such payments and dealing with complaints and queries relating to such payments and refunds.  

We use cookies on our website to enable the use of a shopping cart for membership payments (logged-in users only), to improve the website's usability, and to validate authenticated users’ sessions.  Cookies do not typically contain any information that personally identifies a user, but personal information that we store about you may be linked to the information stored in and obtained from cookies.   [If you block cookies, you may not be able to use all the features on our website.] 

Where payment is made via bank transfer or standing order, details are held by the bank on the Bank of Scotland’s secure server. We do not have access to account details of any payees paying us through the bank.


Data retention

This section sets out our data retention policies and procedure. These are designed to help ensure that we comply with our obligations in relation to the retention and deletion of personal information.


How long your information will be retained for

We shall only retain your personal information for as long as necessary to fulfil the purposes we collected it for, including for the purposes of satisfying any legal (including fraud), accounting or reporting requirements.  This will generally be for no more than three years.

If your subscription falls into arrears, we shall contact you to ascertain whether you wish to renew your membership.  We shall send reminders to current members regarding subscriptions as these fall due.

In some circumstances, we may anonymise your personal information so that it can no longer be associated with you, in which case we may use such information without further notice to you.  Once you are no longer a Member, we shall retain and subsequently securely destroy your personal information in accordance with this policy, applicable laws and regulations.


Rights of access, correction, erasure, and restriction

It is important that the personal information we hold about you is accurate and current. Please keep us informed if your personal information changes during your membership.


Your rights in connection with personal information

Under certain circumstances, by law you have the right to:

  • >Request access to your personal information (commonly known as a ‘Data Subject Access Request’, DSAR). This enables you to receive a copy of the personal information we hold about you, to check that we are lawfully processing it. 
  • >Request correction of the personal information that we hold about you. This enables you to have any incomplete or inaccurate information we hold about you corrected.
  • >Request the erasure of your personal information. This enables you to ask us to delete or remove personal information where there is no good reason for us continuing to process it. You also have the right to ask us to stop processing personal information where we are relying on a legitimate interest and there is something about your particular situation that makes you want to object to processing on this ground.
  • >Request the restriction of processing of your personal information. This enables you to ask us to suspend the processing of personal information about you, for example if you want us to establish its accuracy or the reason for processing it.
  • >Request the transfer of your personal information to another party. 

    You can exercise these rights by contacting the data privacy manager in writing.


No fee usually required

You will not have to pay a fee to access your personal information (or to exercise any of the other rights). However, we may charge a reasonable fee if your request for access is clarly unfounded or excessive. Alternatively, we may refuse to comply with the request in such circumstances.


What we may need from you

We may need to request specific information from you to help us confirm your identity and ensure your right to access the information (or to exercise any of your other rights).


Your right of access

You have the right to access your personal data held by SAMS. If you wish to receive a copy of your personal data, please submit a Data Subject Access Form (GDPR Appendix A). 


Your right for data to be corrected

One of the fundamental principles underpinning data protection is that the data SAMS processes about you will be accurate and up to date. You have the right to have your data corrected if it is inaccurate or incomplete.  If you wish to have your data rectified, you should do so by completing the Data Rectification Form (GDPR Appendix B).

SAMS will respond to a data rectification request within one month.  Where the data rectification request is complex, SAMS may extend the timescale for response from one month to three months. If this is the case, SAMS will write to you within one month of receipt of the request explaining the reason for the extension.

If the response to your request is that SAMS will take no action, you will be informed of the reasons for this and of your right to complain to the Information Commissioner’s Office.

Where any data that has been rectified was disclosed to third parties in its unrectified form, SAMS will inform the third party of the rectification where possible. SAMS will also inform you of the third parties to whom the data was disclosed. 


Your right to have information deleted

You have the right to have your data deleted and removed from our systems where there is no compelling business reason for SAMS to continue to process it. If you wish to make a request for data deletion, you should complete the Data Deletion Request (GDPR Appendix C).

Upon receipt of a request, SAMS will delete the data unless it is processed for SAMS to comply with a legal requirement or in the performance of a task carried out in the public interest or exercise of official authority.

Where the data which is to be deleted has been shared with third parties, SAMS will inform those third parties where this is possible.  However, where this notification will cause a disproportionate effect on SAMS, this notification may not be carried out.  


Data Privacy Manager

We have appointed a Data Privacy Manager to oversee compliance with this privacy notice.  If you have any questions about how we handle your personal information, please contact the Data Privacy Manager.  You have the right to make a complaint at any time to the Information Commissioner's Office (ICO), the UK supervisory authority for data protection issues.


Changes to this privacy notice

We reserve the right to update this privacy notice at any time, and we will provide you with a new privacy notice when we make any substantial updates. We may also notify you in other ways from time to time about the processing of your personal information.  


Right to withdraw consent

In the limited circumstances where you may have provided your consent to the collection, processing and transfer of your personal information for a specific purpose, you have the right to withdraw your consent for that specific processing at any time. To withdraw your consent, please contact the Data Privacy Manager, through DPE@sams.ac.uk. Once we have received notification that you have withdrawn your consent, we shall no longer process your information for the purpose(s) you originally agreed to, unless we have another basis for doing so in law. 

If you have any questions about this privacy notice, please contact the Data Privacy Manager, through DPE@sams.ac.uk or in writing. 

Last updated: 25 May 2018

Legal notice

Unless otherwise indicated, this website and its contents are the property of The Scottish Association for Marine Science (SAMS), whose administrative offices are at The Scottish Marine Institute, Oban, Argyll PA37 1QA. The copyright in the material contained on this Website belongs to SAMS or its licensors. The trademarks appearing on this Website are protected by the laws of Scotland and by international trademark laws.

  1. The information placed on this Website by the SAMS has been prepared solely for the purpose of providing selected information about SAMS, its subsidiary companies and organisations with which it is associated; and about the respective services which they offer.
  2. SAMS does not make any warranty that information contained on this Website, or on any site linked to this Website, is complete, accurate or up-to-date; and SAMS is not responsible for the results of reliance on any such information.
  3. SAMS does not make any warranty that use of the Website will be uninterrupted, virus-free or error-free; or that use of the Website will not affect other software or operating systems used to access the Website. Any warranties provided under the general law are expressly excluded to the fullest extent possible. In particular, SAMS does not warrant that use of the Website will not infringe the rights of any other person or organisation; nor that the Website is of reasonable quality or fit for any particular purpose, even if SAMS has received notice of an intention to use the Website for that purpose.
  4. Unless they are contained in SAMS information, or unless expressly stated otherwise, opinions given on this Website are those of the individuals making them, and not those of SAMS: SAMS is not responsible for such opinions or any claims resulting from them.
  5. To the extent permitted in law, SAMS accepts no liability for any loss or damage which may be suffered by other parties as a direct or indirect result of using this Website (including loss of profit, loss of opportunity, loss of business, and consequential loss).
  6. Persons submitting material other than SAMS Information to this Website are solely responsible for the material and for any claims relating to its content, whether made against SAMS or otherwise. Whilst SAMS does not exercise significant editorial control over content posted to the Website by users, SAMS reserves the right at its sole discretion to remove any content which it has been notified is objectionable, whether or not the objection is substantiated, and otherwise to review, edit or delete any comments posted by users which it deems defamatory, unlawful, threatening or otherwise objectionable. Notwithstanding the foregoing, and to the extent permitted in law, SAMS accepts no responsibility or liability for any material communicated by third parties via the Website.
  7. Subject to the above, those gaining access to this Website are authorised to make use of the Website (and of any chatrooms and interactive facilities which may be available through it) for any lawful purposes. The following is a non-exclusive list of uses which are expressly prohibited:

 a. using the Website to commit or encourage unlawful acts, including unlawful copying of copyright material;

 b. misrepresenting the user's identity or authority;

 c. distributing any type of virus or other device intended to cause nuisance, loss or corruption of any information on the Website or accessed through it, or of any systems used to operate the Website or any systems accessed through it; 

d. tampering with communications which are not the user's, or making any alteration to any information on the Website;

 e. accessing or attempting to access other parties' user accounts;

 f. hacking or attempting to hack any part of the Website, or any system used to run it, or any system accessed through the Website; 

g. disrupting the flow of communications in interactive areas; 

h. storing personal data derived from the Website;

 i. posting material which: 
(i) infringes intellectual property rights; 
(ii) defames or threatens other people or organisations;
 (iii) is offensive, obscene or hateful, or which other users of the Website are likely to consider offensive, obscene or hateful.
  8. SAMS collects e-mail addresses and other contact details, together with any comments provided voluntarily via this Website. SAMS also collects information on what pages are visited. This information is used to improve the content of the Website and to make contact for marketing purposes and for the supply of information.
  9. These terms are governed by Scottish law, and the Courts of Scotland have exclusive jurisdiction in relation to them.
  10. If any of these terms is found to be illegal or unenforceable by a court of competent jurisdiction, the term(s) in question will be severed; but the remaining terms will continue in force.


Terms and conditions for using www.sams.ac.uk


All information provided by the Scottish Association for Marine Science on the web pages are made available to provide immediate access for the convenience of interested persons.

While SAMS believes the information to be reliable, human or mechanical error remains a possibility. Therefore, SAMS does not guarantee the accuracy, completeness, timeliness, or correct sequencing of the information.

Neither SAMS nor any of the sources of the information shall be responsible for any errors or omissions, or for the use of or results obtained from the use of this information.


Terms of use

Information at this site is:

  • >general information provided as part of the SAMS commitment to publicising its activities and disseminating of information relating to its organisation
  • >subject to the usual uncertainties of research
  • >subject to change without notice
  • >not to be relied on as the basis for doing or failing to do something.

Links to and from this site are:

  • >not endorsed by SAMS
  • >not prohibited by SAMS (either to the front page of through deep linking)
  • >for convenience only and do not mean that SAMS endorses or approves those other sites, their content or the people who run them
  • >for the Internet user to make their own decisions about the accuracy, currency, reliability and correctness of information found at sites linked from this website, rather than the responsibility of SAMS

About this site

This is the Scottish Association for Marine Science's main public facing website. It is managed and maintained by the SAMS communications team. There is a change in layout apparent in the 'services' area as this takes the visitor to the website of SAMS Enterprise, a subsidiary company of SAMS that produces its own website and content, or to the Culture Collection of Algae and Protozoa website or the National Facility for Scientific Diving website, which are national facility functions of SAMS with a long-established brand separate from that of SAMS.


Our sites are designed to conform to the W3C (World Wide Web Consortium) guidelines. For more information please see the Accessibility Statement for this site.

Search and maps

SAMS uses Google Search Appliance, accessible through the search box in the header of all pages. 

This site uses Google maps.

Contacting a webmaster

If you have any comments or suggestions about any of SAMS’ websites, please use the contact link provided on the web page your inquiry refers to. This will send a mail to the relevant content provider.

If you would like to contact the webmaster for any SAMS owned site (www.sams.ac.uk, www.sams-enterprise.com, www.ecmb.org, www.marinesciencefestival.com, www.oceanexplorercentre.org, www.ccap.ac.uk, www.nfsd.org.uk)  please email: webmaster@sams.ac.uk

Site Design

This T4 site was designed by Rory MacKinnon & Will Harvey of the SAMS communications team.

SAMS is an independent research institute and a charitable body and is not classified as a Scottish Public Authority and therefore is not directly subject to the Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act 2002 (FOISA) or to the Environmental Information (Scotland) Regulations 2004 (EIRs).

The  Scottish  public  authorities  which  are  subject  to  the  regimes  are  listed  in Schedule 1 of FOISA or designated in an order under section 5 (1) of FOISA. These  include  the  Scottish  Government,  local  authorities, the  NHS,  schools, colleges  and universities, and the police. Wholly publicly owned companies (including those wholly owned by more than one authority) are also covered by the regimes. Under the EIRs, some additional bodies are subject to the regime if they fall under the control of a public authority covered by EIRs and they have public responsibilities, functions, or provide public services in relation to the environment.

The Scottish Information Commissioner publishes guidance on how to make a valid information request.