Newsletter – May 2016


Listening to Our Members: Part 1

By Sarah Witham Bednarz

For me, one of the best sessions at our annual meeting reported the results of our first membership survey. A stellar crew, including past presidents Julie Winkler and Mona Domosh, assembled to present a few of its key findings. Alas, it was not terrifically well-attended (Lunch time. San Francisco. Who doesn’t want to eat?) so I will follow up in this column and in next month’s with a few findings and an explanation about how Council is using these data to make our organization stronger.

The purpose of the survey, in the parlance of the consulting company we hired to conduct it, McKinley Advisors, was to, “… understand current member perceptions, to identify areas where AAG is successfully delivering value today, and to uncover opportunities to provide greater value and support to the members.” Continue Reading.

Recent columns from the President

NSF Funds Research Coordination Network for Geography Educationunnamed-300x169-1

The National Science Foundation, through its Geography and Spatial Sciences program, has awarded the AAG and Texas State University a five-year, $400,000 grant to develop a research coordination network (RCN) for transformative research in geography education. The RCN will be a project of the National Center for Research in Geography Education (NCRGE) under the direction of Dr. Michael Solem (AAG) and Dr. Richard G. Boehm (Texas State University).

Learn More.


AAG16_WGB_SEDAAG-WINS-0290-1-300x200-1.AAG President Sarah Bednarz (far right) presented prizes to winners, including the winning Southeast Division team above. (Photograph for AAG by Becky Pendergast)

Southeast Division Team Takes 2016 World Geography Bowl Title

The Southeast Division team won first place in the 2016 World Geography Bowl (WGB), an annual quiz competition for teams of college-level geography students representing the AAG’s regional divisions. First runner-up was the Pacific Coast Division team and second runner-up was the Middle Atlantic Division team. This was the 27th year for AAG hosting during its annual meeting in San Francisco, Calif. Learn More.


Guide-cover-15-16-232x300-1AAG Now Accepting Entries for the 2015-2016 edition of the Guide

The American Association of Geographers is accepting entries from geography programs to be included in the 2015-2016 edition of the Guide to Geography Programs in the Americas. The deadline for submitting a listing has been extended to Friday, May 20, 2016.

The 2015-2016 edition of the Guide will be available exclusively online.

The Guide serves as a complete and invaluable reference for faculty, prospective students, government agencies, and private firms in the United States, Canada, and throughout the world. Listing a geography program in the Guide ensures that geographers and prospective students who want to contact them will be able to learn what the program does and will know how to reach them.

To list your institution, please contact Mark Revell at guide [at] aag [dot] org.

Upcoming Award Deadlines for AAG Honors, Media Achievement, AAG Publication Award

Get a Head Start on Upcoming Award Nominations

Nominations for AAG Honors, Media Achievement Award, and AAG Publication Award are due June 30, 2016. AAG Honors recognize outstanding accomplishments by members in research & scholarship, teaching, education, service to the discipline, public service outside academe and for lifetime achievement. The Media Achievement Award is presented for exceptional and outstanding accomplishments in publicizing geographical insights in media of general or mass communication. The AAG Publication Award honors exceptional and outstanding contributions to the discipline by publishers. Learn More.

Recommend Candidates for AAG Honors and Nominating Committees

The AAG Council seeks nominations for candidates to serve on the AAG Honors Committee and the AAG Nominating Committee. The Council will prepare the final slate of candidates for both committees from the nominations received, and committee members will be elected by a vote of the AAG membership.

The Honors Committee submits to the Council nominations for awards at least two weeks before the council’s Fall meeting, accompanied by a statement indicating the contribution which forms the basis of the proposed award.

The Nominating Committee recommends to the Council the slate of candidates for the AAG Vice President, President, and National Councilor elections. Learn More.


AAG workshops focus on early career faculty, department leadership needs

The University of Tennessee will host two AAG-sponsored workshops in June designed for all geographers interested in improving their programs and graduate students and faculty who are beginning their careers in higher education. The AAG Department Leadership Workshop is particularly well suited for individuals who may soon assume leadership positions. The GFDA Early Career Workshop — open to faculty from inside and outside the US — focuses on topics which are frequently the greatest sources of stress in the first years of a faculty appointment. Learn more.

PeuquetDonna-200x300-1Donna Peuquet named 2016 UCGIS Fellow

AAG member Donna J. Peuquet, professor of geography in the Penn State Department of Geography, has been selected as a 2016 Fellow by the University Consortium for Geographic Information Science (UCGIS).

Fellows are individuals who have contributed significantly to the advancement of geographic information science education and research. Peuquet was chosen as Fellow for her research and education contributions to the field of GIScience, as well as her leadership in UCGIS and other geospatial organizations. She will be recognized at the 2016 UCGIS Symposium May 24-26 in Scottsdale, Arizona. Learn More.



Annals-cover-2016-230x300-2May 2016 Issue of the ‘Annals of the AAG’ Now Available

The AAG is pleased to announce that Volume 106, Issue 3 (May 2016) of the Annals of the American Association of Geographers is now availableThe Annals contains original, timely, and innovative articles that advance knowledge in all facets of the discipline. Featured in this issue is a forum on “Geography and Militarism.” Learn More.

New Books in Geography — April 2016

The AAG Review of Books office has released the list of the books received during the month of April. Learn More.


Wither “Traditional” Geography?

By Casey D. Allen

Everyone who has taken a basic geography course know its Greek etymology as coined by Eratosthenes: geo, meaning “earth” and graphe, meaning to “describe”. For many centuries after, geography was synonymous with exploration and discovery, both of the physical/natural and cultural/human/social landscapes. While geographers past may have noted differences between the landscape dichotomy they practiced geography without worry of infringing on (now-prevalent) disciplinary boundaries. It wasn’t until the discipline’s so-called Quantitative Revolution in the mid-twentieth century that a visceral fracturing between geography’s physical and human spheres came to the forefront. Of course, as we have nowadays, each geographer past also had their own expertise area, but the difference between then and now is, they still continued to explore both physical and human aspects of the Earth, despite any potential inclination to one or the other. Learn More.


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