COSSA Holds 2017 Annual Meeting and Advocacy Day
COSSA Holds 2017 Annual Meeting and Advocacy Day

April 2017

The Consortium of Social Science Associations (COSSA) held its 2017 Annual Meeting on March 29 and 30, which included Social and Behavioral Science Advocacy Day on March 30, bringing together more than 100 members of the social and behavioral science community for a day of discussion on federal issues impacting social and behavioral science research. About 70 participants took to Capitol Hill on March 30 to meet with their congressional delegations to discuss the value and importance of this research. Rep. Daniel Lipinski (D-IL) gave a one-minute speech on the House floor recognizing the visiting social scientists and thanking them for their work.

AERA Executive Director Felice J. Levine, who chairs the COSSA Board of Directors, and COSSA Executive Director Wendy A. Naus welcomed attendees at the opening session on March 29. The keynote presenter, Arlie Russell Hochschild, spoke about her book Strangers in Their Own Land: Anger and Mourning on the American Right.

Kei Koizumi, American Association for the Advancement of Science, Ron Haskins, Brookings Institution, ad Kenneth Prewitt, Columbia University, joined Levine and Naus to explore new strategies to maintain the federal investment in social and behavioral science issues. Afternoon sessions included discussions on the benefits of public engagement by social scientists, mobilizing social science students, engaging with national media outlets, the role of social scientists in government service, and ways to meaningfully advocate from home.

At a reception on the evening of March 29, COSSA presented Sen. Cory Gardner (R-CO) and Sen. Gary Peters (D-MI) with the 2017 Distinguished Service Award. The award recognizes leaders who have gone above and beyond to promote, protect, and advance the social and behavioral science research enterprise. The senators were recognized for their bipartisan work on the American Innovation and Competitiveness Act, which reauthorizes activities at the National Science Foundation.

On March 30, COSSA members, including Levine and Juliane Baron, AERA director of government relations, were divided into teams and met with Senate and House staff in over 50 offices to discuss the value of social science research and the critical role the federal government plays in supporting this research. AERA was a meeting sponsor.