Current Events in the Discipline
- There is a new APSA organized section on experimental research! The mission of the Organized Section on Experimental Research is to advance pedagogy, research, and contributions based on randomized or natural experiments. The creation of the American Political Science Association Organized Section on Experimental Research marks an important milestone in the history of political science. Over the past three decades, experimental research has blossomed in all subfields of the discipline. Laboratory, field, and survey experiments are no longer viewed as exotic tools, but as central to the generation of knowledge. Their increasing role in the discipline is clear from the remarkable growth of journal articles that are based on experimental data or discuss the logic of experimentation.
- The mainstreaming of experimental research is part of a broader revolution across the social sciences that recognizes the fundamental importance of sound causal inference. The Experimental Research Section reflects this spirit of discovery and collaboration across disciplines and subfields. The new Section provides a forum for scholarly dialogue about experimental design and analysis, helping researchers translate their substantive questions into workable and innovative experiments.
- Political scientists whose research and teaching interests focus on migration and citizenship have launched a petition drive to create a new Section on Migration & Citizenship within the American Political Science Association (APSA). APSA currently recognizes 39 organized sections across a range of substantive, geographical, and methodological sub-disciplinary fields. None of the existing sections, however, provide a fitting scholarly home for migration and citizenship scholars, whose research habitually traverses multiple geographical and political boundaries and involves the use of varied methods and data sources.
- A new Section on Migration & Citizenship will provide APSA members who share a common interest in migration and citizenship with a critical outlet for their research through opportunities to organize meetings and panels and coordinate communications under the auspices of APSA. A new Section will also give the study of migration and citizenship a deservedly more central place in the political science discipline in light of the increased political salience of migration and citizenship, as reflected in the growing interest both in research and teaching in these areas. In approving the new Section, APSA would join other professional associations, including the American Sociological Association, the International Studies Association, the Law and Society Association, the Social Science History Association, and the Western Political Science Association, which already have organized sections focused on migration and citizenship.
- The petition for the Migration & Citizenship Section of APSA has long been in the making. For several years, there was an APSA Working Group on Immigration & U.S. Politics, which organized lunch sessions during APSA meetings where Working Group participants could network and discuss their research on the politics of immigration and immigrant integration in the United States. In 2009 and 2010, the Working Group on Immigration & U.S. Politics ran concurrently with the Working Group on Citizenship & Migration, which focused more specifically on issues of citizenship and the many ties between citizenship and migration. In 2011, these two groups merged and eventually became the Related Group on Migration & Citizenship, which will be able to support one panel at each of the 2012-2014 APSA annual meetings. The new Section on Migration & Citizenship is the next logical step to further institutionalize within APSA a group exclusively devoted to scholarship and teaching of migration and citizenship.
- For the new Section to become a reality, at least 200 current APSA members need to approve the petition by 1/31/2012. The petition also needs to obtain the approval of APSA leadership. In early January, over 270 APSA members had already signed the petition, a good sign that the new Section will succeed. For more information on the petition, go to: http://migrationcitizenshipsectionapsa.weebly.com.
- Els de Graauw
Assistant Professor of Political Science at Baruch College, CUNY & Co-chair of the APSA Related Group on Migration & Citizenship
- A new journal is being produced by WPSA! Politics, Groups, & Identities (PGI) is a new journal to be launched in 2013 and will concern questions and issues of identity politics. Questions of minority rights and minority identity are increasingly prominent both in the academy and the wider world. PGI will offer a new platform for work that focuses on the politics of social identity and minority groups to which scholars in a range of sub-fields can submit articles and which will encourage discussion across those sub-fields. The new journal will be more than simply a new home for scholarship it will also become an important vehicle for developing scholarship on the topic. It will encourage the search for overlapping themes and arguments and help to develop a comparative literature on these topics both across fields and, conceivably, across the social sciences.
- At the last WPSA Executive Council meeting in September, the council appointed the first editorial team to lead in the development and publication of the journal. The team consists of Lisa García Bedolla, University of California, Berkeley; Rosalee Clawson, Purdue; Ange-Marie Hancock, USC; Kerry Haynie, Duke; James McCann, Purdue; Eric Waltenburg, Purdue; and Laurel Weldon, Purdue. Lead editorship for the journal will rotate among the four Purdue scholars, with Rosalee Clawson serving as the first editor. Purdue University is providing generous support for the editorial team in helping to get the journal off the ground.