Newsletter – January 2017


Strengths and Challenges of Diversity

By Glen M. MacDonald
Glen M. MacDonald

It is fair to say that the recent election has created deep concerns in our community regarding issues of diversity and gender equity. This unease certainly extends far beyond the campuses. In writing about the uncertainty in America’s corporate workplaces a recent article in Bloomberg stated, “Diversity issues have come to the fore as the presidential campaign exposed and deepened bitter divisions on matters such as the treatment of women and minorities.” So, as we enter the potentially troubled waters of 2017, allow me to share some of my thoughts on the fundamental issue of diversity as it relates to our discipline and the AAG.

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Recent columns from the President


AAG Launches New Fellows Program: AAG Fellows

The AAG is honored to announce it has launched AAG Fellows, a new program to recognize geographers who have made significant contributions to advancing geography. In addition to honoring geographers, AAG Fellows will serve the AAG as an august body to address key AAG initiatives including creating and contributing to AAG initiatives; advising on AAG strategic directions and grand challenges; and mentoring early and mid-career faculty.

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David Harvey To Deliver Fea3tured Lecture at AAG Annual Meeting in Boston

David Harvey, one of the most influential figures in geography and urban studies, and among the most cited intellectuals of all time across the humanities and social sciences, will deliver a featured lecture, “Marx, Capital and the Madness of Economic Reason,” on April 8, 2017, at the AAG Annual Meeting in Boston.

For geographers and non-geographers across many disciplines and languages, David Harvey has established the importance of space and uneven geographical development to the survival of capitalist accumulation, the perpetuation of inequality, and the rise of neoliberalism. His body of work demonstrates the highly creative and consequential place that geographers can have in engaging in and shaping broader transdisciplinary discussions and debates.

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Celebrate the International Encyclopedia of Geography in Boston

he International EncyclopediaAttend the editor’s panel and reception

Join us in celebrating the official launch of the International Encyclopedia of Geography: People, the Earth, Environment, and Technologies in Boston! There will be a brief overview of the Encyclopedia from its general editors, followed by a Q&A session with the general and section editors of this great work. Mark your calendars for 5:20-7:00 p.m. on Friday, April 7, 2017.

Following this session will be the AAG International Reception: A Celebration of the International Encyclopedia of Geography, an event with food, drinks, music, and interaction with the editors. All attendees are invited to attend.

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Abstracts for Poster Sessions are due by Feb. 23

Posters are exhibited for informal browsing with opportunities for individual discussion with poster authors. The AAG will host all themed poster sessions in the Exhibit Hall. Please note that the AAG will add your poster to the session which most closely aligns to your poster’s theme, however if you have a strong preference you may indicate in which poster session you would like to participate in in the “Special Requests” field of the abstract submission console. All abstracts must be submitted by Feb. 23, 2017.

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AAG Specialty and Affinity Group Awards

Each year many AAG Specialty and Affinity Groups confer travel grants, hold paper competitions, and bestow honors and awards to their faculty and student members at the AAG Annual Meeting. Notices for these competitions may appear on the relevant specialty group’s website or listserve, or on the AAG News site.

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Additional Annual Meeting Updates


Important Election Information: Voting Begins Today!

The AAG election will be conducted online again, and will take place Jan. 11-Feb. 2, 2017. Each member who has an email address on record with the AAG will receive a special email with a code that will allow them to sign in to our AAG SimplyVoting website and vote. It’s important to update your email address to make sure you will be able to vote. If you know your email address is up to date with us, there’s no need to do anything further.

Read about the candidates now.

Jennifer Cassidento Appointed as AAG Publications Director

Jennifer CassidentoThe American Association of Geographers is pleased to announce the appointment of Jennifer Cassidento as its new Publications Director. Cassidento brings a wealth of editorial expertise and experience to the AAG publications. She has worked previously with major scholarly publishing houses, and for several years with the AAG on its journals, serving as managing editor of three of its flagship journals, including the Annals of the American Association of Geographers, the AAG Review of Books, and GeoHumanities.

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New AAG Position Opening: Senior Geography Researcher

The American Association of Geographers (AAG) has an immediate opening for the position of Senior Geography Researcher, to be located at the AAG’s central office in Washington, DC.

We seek an individual with a passion for geography and strong writing and management skills, and who can initiate, support, and lead AAG programs in research, education, and outreach. The successful candidate will participate in AAG research programs; contribute to new project development; interact constructively with academic and non-academic organizations; and support program management.

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Join the Effort to Make a New AP Course in GIS&T


The AAG’s proposal for a new Advanced Placement course in Geographic Information Science and Technology (AP GIS&T) continues to receive strong interest from high schools, colleges, and universities across the U.S. However, in order to complete the proposal package for the College Board, the AAG needs to collect attestations of interest from at least 250 high schools.

So far 121 high schools have registered their interest in the AP GIS&T course. The AAG invites all members to share the AP GIS&T proposal with high schools in their local community.

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AAG Launches New Twitter Chat Series

Join the #AAGChat on Careers in Geography, Jan. 12, 2017

aagchat-careers-social-graphicMark your calendars and be sure to join us for an #AAGChat on careers in geography. The chat will address the many diverse career opportunities for geographers in a variety of industries and employment sectors and how geography students, graduates and early-career professionals can identify appropriate job openings. We will also discuss the many career resources available through the AAG, including our Jobs in Geography Center, Student Opportunities website, and more!

The chat will occur on Thursday, Jan. 12, 2017, from 3-4 p.m. EST. To participate in the chat, please use the hashtag, #AAGChat. Make sure to follow us on Twitter by searching for our handle, @TheAAG!

Also, be sure to visit our updated social media page to view our previous Twitter Chat held during Geography Awareness Week and learn more about our social media channels and events.

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Annual Meeting Support

AAG has a variety of opportunities for students, un-/underemployed geographers, and scholars outside the discipline to attend and participate in the Annual Meeting.

Some funding opportunities:

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Glenda Laws Award Nomination Deadline Extended to Jan. 31

awardsAll early- to mid-career scholars involved in geographic research on one or more social issues are eligible to be nominated for the Glenda Laws Award, which recognizes outstanding contributions to geographic research on social issues. Named in memory of Glenda Laws, a geographer who brought energy and enthusiasm to her work on issues of social justice and social policy, the award is presented at the awards luncheon at the AAG annual meeting.

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Susan Christopherson

Susan Christopherson, Professor and Department Chair of the City and Regional Planning at Cornell University, passed away on December 14, 2016.

Christopherson was a geographer committed to the integration of scholarly work and public engagement. She was awarded the 2016 AAG Lifetime Achievement Honors for her considerable and long standing contributions to economic geography research, public engagement, teaching, and service. Her work on media, optics, agriculture, renewable energy, and manufacturing included deep engagement with local economic development authorities to produce research that contributed to spatially and socially balanced economic growth.

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Graduate Students Honored During AAG Regional Division Annual Fall Meetings for Outstanding Work

The American Association of Geographers (AAG) announces the recipients of the 2016 Council Award for Outstanding Graduate Student Paper at a Regional Meeting. Graduate student AAG members from around the U.S. participated by submitting to their region’s paper competition and attending their regional division fall meeting. A student paper from seven out of nine AAG regions was chosen by a jury of AAG regional division leaders and the honors for this inaugural award were given at each of the division meetings.

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William Easterling To Head Geosciences Directorate at the National Science Foundation

The National Science Foundation (NSF) has selected William E. Easterling to serve as Assistant Director for Geosciences and as head of the Directorate for Geosciences (GEO). GEO supports fundamental research at academic institutions covering atmospheric, earth, ocean and polar sciences through federal funding.

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Pre-order ‘The International Encyclopedia of Geography’

he International EncyclopediaThe AAG and an international team of distinguished editors and authors are in the final stages of preparing a new major reference work for Geography: The International Encyclopedia of Geography: People, the Earth, Environment, and Technology.

This 15-volume work, published by Wiley both in hard copy and online, will be an invaluable resource for libraries, geographers, GIScientists, students and academic departments around the globe. Updated annually, this Encyclopedia will be the authoritative reference work in the field of geography for decades to come.

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‘Annals of the AAG’ Welcomes New Editor

Our flagship journal, the Annals of the American Association of Geographers, begins the new year with a change of editorship for the newly named Physical Geography and Environmental Sciences section.

Mark A. Fonstad has completed two terms as editor of the Environmental Sciences section and his successor is David R. Butler, who assumes editorship of the Physical Geography and Environmental Sciences section.

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December 2016 Issue of ‘GeoHumanities’ Now Available

The AAG is pleased to announce that Volume 2, Issue 2 (December 2016) of GeoHumanities is now available. GeoHumanities is the newest journal of the American Association of Geographers. It features articles that span conceptual and methodological debates in geography and the humanities; critical reflections on analog and digital artistic productions; and new scholarly interactions occurring at the intersections of geography and multiple humanities disciplines.

Each issue, the Editors choose one article to make freely available. In this issue you can read From Citizen Sensing to Collective Monitoring: Working through the Perceptive and Affective Problematics of Environmental Pollution by Helen Pritchard and Jennifer Gabrys for free.

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