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AAA Members Showcase NSF Study to U.S. Senate

AAA members Kenneth Broad and Ben Orlove participated in a showcase of NSF-funded Hazard Research on Capitol Hill last week in recognition of National Preparedness Month (September).

Ben Orlove, Robert Meyer and Kenneth Broad

The showcase took place at the Hart Senate Office Building where members of Congress and their staffers could drop-in to learn about the important use of NSF funding.

 Broad and Orlove are part of a dynamic research team that studies how natural hazard warnings can be improved. Joined by Robert Meyer, Shuyi Chen, Jay Baker and Katherine Thompson, this team seeks to understand how the public interprets and responds to information about natural hazards.

Our study integrated innovative social science research methods to identify patterns in behavioral strategies in the face of disaster forecasts, risk factors and means of improving communicating forecasts.

 In order to best serve the people of the United States in the face of natural hazards, further research is needed to understand the influence of mass media, social interactions, and past experience with false alarms, on public response to forecasting.

National Robotics Initiative Solicitation

The National Science Foundation has announced a new solicitation for researchers working the field of robotics.  One of the goals of this new funding according the NSF is to gain a better understanding of the long term social, behavioral and economic implications of co-robots across all areas of human activity are important parts of this initiative.  Further, the National Robotics Initiative is attempting to accelerate the development and use of robots which work in symbiotic relationships with human partners.

For more information please click here.

RACE: Are We So Different? Exhibit in National Spotlight

Mark your calendars! The RACE: Are We So Different? exhibit is coming to the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History is summer.

Are you interested in conversations about science, history, and culture? Have you heard that the RACE: Are We So Different?  traveling exhibition will open this month at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of Natural History? Please join us for a special lecture and discussion with Dr. Yolanda T. Moses on Friday, June 17 from 10-11am in Natural History’s Baird Auditorium.

 Dr. Moses is the American Anthropological Association’s lead curator for the RACE exhibition, and a professor of anthropology and Vice Provost for Conflict Resolution at the University of California-Riverside. She will be speaking about the history and making of RACE: Are We So Different? After the program, attendees are invited to explore the exhibition.

 RACE: Are We So Different? opens to the public on Saturday, June 18. The exhibition is a project of the American Anthropological Association, created in collaboration with the Science Museum of Minnesota and funded by the Ford Foundation and the National Science Foundation.

AAA Member on First U.S.-led Archaeological Survey Inside Iraq in 20 years

Courtesy of NSF - click on photo for complete slideshow

Research assistant professor in the Environment and Sustainability Program of the School of the Earth, Ocean, and Environment at the University of South Carolina, Jennifer Pournell was one of three National Science Foundation-supported researchers that recently undertook the first non-Iraqi archaeological investigation of the Tigris-Euphrates delta in nearly 20 years. Pournelle and her research team carried out the study late  last year to look for links between wetland resources and the emergence of Meopotamian cities.

Read about their investigation and experience in Iraq, here.

Budget Announced – Write to Your Congress Representative Today!

Yesterday, the Obama Administration released its budget for fiscal year 2012, a plan that includes bold proposals to reduce government spending and address a budget deficit that is expected to reach over $1.6 trillion dollars by the end of this fiscal year.

Among the agencies subject to proposed budget cuts include the National Endowment for the Humanities and the National Endowment for the Arts (both agencies subject to a reduction of 13.1% to $146 million), and the Institute of Museum and Library Services (a reduction of 13.8% to 243 million).

While the budget includes modest increases for the Smithsonian Institution (6.9% to 1.05 billion), the National Institutes of Health (2.4% to 31.8 billion) and the National Science Foundation (13% to 7.8 billion), Republicans have introduced, cuts to CURRENT funding for the NIH ($1.6 billion) and the NSF ($360 million). These actions, introduced in the latest version of the House continuing resolution (CR) funding bill for the remainder of this year, may be a portent of cuts to come for the 2012 budget bill.

Please contact your local Representatives and ask:
 1: the current CR NOT to include cuts to NSF and NIH
2: the final FY 2012 budget eliminate the proposed cuts to NEH, NEA, and IMLS.

Don’t delay, write to your congressmen today!

AAA Member Honored with Distinguished Explorer Award

2011 Distinguished Explorer Award Winner

Congratulations to Steve Lekson!

Lekson is the first archaeologist to receive the Distinguished Explorer Award by the Roy Chapman Andrews Society.

A professor and curator of anthropology at the University of Colorado, Dr. Leckson has been discovering and digging ancient sites for nearly 40 years. Before moving to the University of Colorado, he served as President and CEO of the Crow Canyon Archaeological Center in Cortez, Colorado, and as an archaeologist with museums in Arizona and New Mexico. His explorations have been supported by the National Science Foundation, National Geographic Society, and National Park Service.

His most recent excavations have been at Black Mountain pueblo, a huge ruin in the bleak Chihuahua Desert of southern New Mexico. The site may be a “missing link” between the famous Mimbres and Casas Grandes cultures of the Southwest.

To read more about Lekson’s award acceptance program, click here.

National Humanities Alliance’s Annual Meeting & Humanities Advocacy Day – Register Today

Each year, the American Anthropological Association partners with the National Humanities Alliance to sponsor Humanities Advocacy Day, a chance for anthropologists and other who work in humanities-related fields to meet their Congressional representatives and advocate for much-needed additional funding for the National Science Foundation, the National Endowment for the Humanities and other Federal agencies. Details and registration information about the event are below.

AAA is proud to announce that the first registrant for this event will have their registration fee waived. We urge you to participate in this event, and if you have any questions, comments or concerns, please contact AAA Director of Public Affairs Damon Dozier at (703) 528-1902 ext. 1163.

Register for the National Humanities Alliance’s 2011 Annual Meeting & Humanities Advocacy Day.  With a new Congress, and increasing budgetary pressures on federal spending, your help is needed now more than ever to defend critical humanities programs.  Online registration is available for the March 7-8 events taking place in Washington, DC at The George Washington University’s Marvin Center and on Capitol Hill.  Strong participation in Humanities Advocacy Day events is essential to increasing public support for, and understanding of, the humanities.

Join the NHA for this national gathering of the humanities community.  Make plans to attend this important event and connect with a growing number of participants who are actively engaged in humanities policy and advocacy. 

The 2011 preliminary program includes:
•New advocate training (pre-meeting event)
•Opening keynote address with David J. Skorton, President, Cornell University
•Presentations of current and compelling work in the humanities
•Luncheon
•Commentary and briefings on the post-election landscape and humanities funding priorities
•Capitol Hill reception sponsored by HISTORY
•Congressional visits

Confirmed meeting and reception speakers include:
•Jim Leach, Chairman, National Endowment for the Humanities (Hill reception)
•Rep. Thomas Petri (R-WI- 6), Co-Chair Congressional Humanities Caucus (Hill reception)
•Damon Dozier, Director of Public Affairs, American Anthropological Association- RACE Project
•Ashley Marshall, Johns Hopkins University Postdoctoral Fellow- American Council of Learned Societies New Faculty Fellows Program
•Tara McPherson, Associate Professor, University of Southern California- Vectors Institute
•Debra Hess Norris, Henry Francis DuPont Chair of Fine Arts & Chair & Director, Art Conservation Department, University of Delaware
•David J. Skorton, President, Cornell University

The participant registration fee is $75.  The deadline to register for the meeting is February 6, 2011.  A block of rooms at the One Washington Circle Hotel (located near GWU) is currently reserved for participants at the discounted rate of $179 on Sunday, March 6 and $229 on Monday, March 7 and Tuesday, March 8. Please call the hotel directly at (202) 872-1680 to make a reservation for the “National Humanities Alliance” rate before February 6, 2011.

Please register today and make sure your voice is heard in Washington, DC this March.  Additional information is available on the Alliance’s website.

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