I am delighted to welcome you to Washington where, on October 17 & 18, the third edition of the conference series on the Societal Impact of Social Sciences and Humanities will take place. After the successful first editions of the conference, this year’s conference will address the societal impact of social sciences & humanities by engaging with government, industry and the public as a whole. Impact is a multidimensional and multifaceted concept necessitating a deeper understanding and much better articulation than what is done today. In the USA many reports have been published on this subject, with a slight focus on the Social Sciences. In many respects, especially for the Humanities it seems that the USA has something to learn from other parts of the world when it comes to measuring and stimulating this impact.
Governments and funders increasingly recognize and reward societal impacts; a new institute will even be established to substantiate this process – the center for Advancing Research and its Impact on Society (ARIS). But there’s still a long way to go when it comes to connecting societal needs to the development of research agendas. We are thankful that the Smithsonian offers us such an exceptional environment to discuss these important issues
This conference will bring together leading thinkers, practitioners, users and policymakers to define, debate and co-design the next chapter of our shared impact agenda.
I hope you’ll join us.
Chair of the conference
CEO, Emeritus of the American Association for the Advancement of Science
This conference has already taken place. Please find the photos of the conference here. Are you interested in the outcomes of the event? As an AESIS+ member you have access to the materials of all our events. Read more about the AESIS+ membership here.
AESIS is proud to announce its third edition on "The Impact of Social Sciences and Humanities on Society," right next to Capitol Hill, in the National Museum of The American Indian, Washington DC. Motivated by science policy developments of recent years, the AESIS Network started in 2017 to organize the first international conference on Societal Impact of Social Sciences and Humanities (SSH), and the signing of the Cardiff Statement on optimizing this impact. Building further on the positive outcome of the SSH 2018 conference in Copenhagen, continuation of the event was decided for the following purposes: to restate and champion the fundamental role that the social sciences and humanities play in society, and to call for an expanded role for the social sciences and humanities in tackling social and cultural problems through academic research.
Alan Leshner (CEO, Emeritus of the American Association for the Advancement of Science) will be chairing the conference. The event aims to foster an international discussion on:
(1) How to define the social impact of social sciences and humanities;
(2) How to measure this impact;
(3) How engaging with government, industry and the public as a whole may stimulate the impact of social sciences and humanities.
The event will bring together experts working as:
On Wednesday October 16, we will open the conference with the Social Programmme. The Social Programme is recommended for anyone interested in science policy systems and the rich history of the United States. On this day, we plan to meet at 13.15. We will start with a tour of the famous Library of Congress, which is the oldest federal cultural institution in the United States, as well as the de facto national library. After this tour, we will move on to the U.S. Capitol Building for our second group tour. The U.S. Capitol Building is the home of the United States Congress and the seat of the legislative branch of the U.S. federal government.
After being inspired by all of the amazing architecture, history and culture, we will have a debate on the difference between the science policy systems of the US and the rest of the world. Afterwards, we will enjoy some drinks with a welcoming reception.
Signing up for the Social Programme can be done while registering for the conference.
The National Museum of the American Indian
Independence Ave SW
Washington, DC 20560, United States
13.15 - 14.45
Tour Library of Congress
15.00 - 16.00
Tour U.S. Capitol Building
16.00 - 19.00
Science Policy Debate & Reception
U.S. Capitol Visitor Center (room SVC 215)
First St NE
Washington, DC 20515, United States
707 7th St NW
Washington, DC 20001, United States
Traveling from Washington's main airports to the conference location
Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport: The conference venue is merely 6 minutes away by car, and 15 minutes away by public transport. Please find a detailed description of the available means of transportation to and from this airport here.
Dulles National Airport: The conference venue is a little more than half an hour away by car, and a bit less than an hour away by public transport. A detailed description of the means of transportation to and from this airport is available here.
Baltimore-Washington International Airport: The conference venue is 42 minutes away by car, and an hour and a half away by public transport. Please find a detailed description of the available means of transportation to and from this airport here.