International Sociological Association

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International Sociological Association
Formation September 1949 (1949-09)
Headquarters Madrid, Spain
2014-2018 President
Margaret Abraham
Website www.isa-sociology.org

The International Sociological Association (ISA) is a non-profit organization dedicated to scientific purposes in the field of sociology and social sciences. It is an international sociological body, gathering both individuals and national sociological organizations. The ISA was founded in 1949 under UNESCO and it has about 4,500 individual and 45 collective members, hailing from 167 countries. Its purpose is to "represent sociologists everywhere, regardless of their school of thought, scientific approaches or ideological opinion" and its objective is to "advance sociological knowledge throughout the world". Along with the Institut International de Sociologie (IIS), it is seen as a world leading international sociological organization.[1]

ISA is a member of the International Social Science Council with the status of the Non-Governmental Organization in formal associate relations with UNESCO and special consultative status with the Economic and Social Council of the United Nations.

The ISA's international conference is held every four years, the last of which, the XVIIIth World Congress of Sociology was held in Yokohama, Japan, in July 2014. ISA also organizes a number of smaller conferences, and publishes two peer reviewed academic journals: Current Sociology and International Sociology.

ISA's first president (1949-1952) was Louis Wirth. The current president (2014-2018) is Margaret Abraham, USA.

Origins[edit]

The history of ISA can be traced to the 1948 initiative of UNESCO's Social Science Department.[2] The initiative was part of a larger plan aiming together to reform the social sciences worldwide, by improving the ties between scholars worldwide "to promote research in fields crucial to establishments of a peaceful world order".[2] As of 1949, sociological associations existed only in Belgium, Brazil, China, Germany, Italy, Japan, the Netherlands, and the USA, with about twenty four more countries having sociologist represented in a different type of an institution.[3] The Institut International de Sociologie (IIS), founded in 1893, was deemed too limited, and it was decided that a new organization needs to be created.[2][4] In the end, representatives from 21 countries were invited for a Constituent Congress, held in Oslo on 5–11 September 1949.[3][5][6][7] The original stated purpose of the organization was "to advance sociological knowledge throughout the world" through measures including developing "personal contacts between sociologists" in different regions and encouraging "international dissemination and exchange of information".[6] A provisional Council was appointed, as were an Executive Secretary, Treasurer, and the Secretariat personnel; statutes were adopted.[5] The first ISA conference was planned for 1950.[5]

Activities[edit]

ISA's purpose is to "represent sociologists everywhere, regardless of their school of thought, scientific approaches or ideological opinion" and its objective is to "advance sociological knowledge throughout the world".[7] To secure those goals, ISA's declares the support for the following activities in its statutes:

  • "to secure and develop institutional and personal contacts between sociologists and other social scientists throughout the world;"
  • "to encourage the international dissemination and exchange of information on developments in sociological knowledge;"
  • "to facilitate and promote international research and training;"
  • "to convene meetings and regularly scheduled world congresses;"
  • "to promote publications which support its other activities."[7]

ISA's formation, under UNESCO aegis, spurred the growth in the creation of various national sociological associations.[8]

In 1952 ISA begun publishing an academic journal, Current Sociology.[9] 1971 marked the introduction of the official newsletter, the ISA Bulletin.[10] In 1986 ISA launched International Sociology, a peer-reviewed journal published six times annually and provided to all members.[11][12] International Sociology also has a child publication, a bi-annual International Sociology Review of Books.[13] Other ISA's publications include the book series Sage Studies in International Sociology Books[14] and ISA Handbooks.[15] It also has published its own code of ethics.[16]

In recent years, ISA has also launched a number of online initiatives, such as an electronic newsletter (Global Dialogue),[17] a blog[18] a Facebook account[19] and a series of videos (Public Sociology, Live,[20] Journeys Through Sociology[21] and Sociotube[22]).

ISA organizes World Congress of Sociology and Forum of Sociology (every four years). In addition ISA organizes a number of smaller, regional and thematic conferences.[11]

List of ISA Congresses[edit]

Since 1962 the ISA World Congress has taken place every four years; before that period, the Congresses were held every three years.[23] The programme of the association and the number of participants at the congresses have grown rapidly since the first Congress met in Zurich, Switzerland (1950) with about 150 participants; the 1994 congress in Bielefeld, Germany, attracted 3,678 participants.[24]

The world congresses were held in:[25]

The forthcoming XIX World Congress of Sociology is scheduled for July 2018 in Toronto, Canada.

List of ISA Forums[edit]

The idea of the Forum gathers and redefines the traditionally organised ISA Research Council conference and the interim conferences of ISA Research Committees. It was an event with two kinds of programs: a general program conceived as a dialogue between Reresearch Committees and made up of the papers presented by the RCs’ delegates to the Research Council conference, and the parallel programs of the RCs organised by them.

The Forums were held in:

The forthcoming Third Forum of Sociology is scheduled for July 2016 in Vienna, Austria.

Most influential works in sociology[edit]

In 1997, ISA conducted a survey of its membership to identify the 20th century's most influential books in sociology. Members were asked to name the five books that had the most influence on their own professional work.[26][27] There were 455 respondents (16% of ISA's members),[26] of whom 20.9% named Economy and Society by Max Weber, placing it first on the ISA list.[28] The list was unveiled at the 1998 ISA congress, the organization's last major conference in the 20th century, also marking ISA's 50th anniversary.[29] Germov and Skrbis described the list as representing "sociology as a truly international, yet Western (and masculine) discipline".[30]

The complete list of the top ten works in sociology, each of which was named by at least 5 percent of respondents, was:[28]

  1. Max Weber, Economy and Society
  2. Charles Wright Mills, The Sociological Imagination
  3. Robert K. Merton, Social Theory and Social Structure
  4. Max Weber, The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism
  5. Peter L. Berger and Thomas Luckmann, The Social Construction of Reality
  6. Pierre Bourdieu, Distinction: A Social Critique of the Judgment of Taste
  7. Norbert Elias, The Civilizing Process
  8. Jürgen Habermas, The Theory of Communicative Action
  9. Talcott Parsons, The Structure of Social Action
  10. Erving Goffman, The Presentation of Self in Everyday Life

Organization[edit]

The statues of ISA were first amended during the World Congress at Varna, and were subsequently amended again in 1974 at Toronto, 1978 at Uppsala, 1982 at Mexico City, 1986 at New Delhi, 1994 at Bielefeld and 2010 at Gothenburg.[7]

At first, the governing body of ISA was the council of national representatives.[8] The council elected the Executive Committee, which was composed of a President, three Vice-presidents, an Executive Secretary, and six other members.[8] In 1970 ISA allowed general individual membership (previously it focused on organizational membership).[31][32] Since then, ISA has both individual and collective members.[7] Currently, the Council of National Associations is supplemented by the Research Council, which is composed individual representatives of all Research Committees.[33] The two Councils hold the Assembly of Councils at the Congresses every four years, electing the President and other officials.[33]

Scientific activities of the ISA occur under the auspices of research committees that gather sociologists interested in similar subfields or topics within sociology.[34] As of 1997 there were 59 such groups with a total membership of 4442 individuals.[7][35][36] The two largest groups at that time were Migration and Social Stratification.[35] As of July 2012, ISA webpages listed 55 Research Committees, 3 Working Groups and 5 Thematic Groups.[36] As of 1994, ISA had 45 national associations as its members.[37] Currently its members come from 167 countries.[38]

ISA offices have changed their location several times; since 1987 they are located are in Madrid, Spain.[39] Although at its beginning, the ISA's budget consisted mainly of UNESCO funds, the modern ISA budget is primarily (90%) composed of from membership dues and sales of publications; only 10% comes from grants of UNESCO/ISSC.[33]

The ISA is a member of the International Social Science Council with the status of the non-governmental organization in formal associate relations with UNESCO and special consultative status with the Economic and Social Council of the United Nations.[38][40]

The recognized languages of the ISA are English, French and Spanish; English is the organization's administrative language.[7]

List of ISA Presidents[edit]

Louis Wirth, first president of ISA

The following individuals held or hold the title of ISA president:[13][41]


References[edit]

  1. ^ Delbert C. Miller; Neil J. Salkind (16 January 2002). Handbook of Research Design and Social Measurement. SAGE. p. 741. ISBN 978-0-7619-2046-5. Retrieved 10 August 2012. 
  2. ^ a b c Platt, Jennifer (1998). "History of ISA: 1948-1997". International Sociological Association. p. 13. Retrieved 25 July 2012. 
  3. ^ a b Platt, Jennifer (1998). "History of ISA: 1948-1997". International Sociological Association. p. 15. Retrieved 25 July 2012. 
  4. ^ Platt, Jennifer (1998). "History of ISA: 1948-1997". International Sociological Association. p. 14. Retrieved 25 July 2012. 
  5. ^ a b c Platt, Jennifer (1998). "History of ISA: 1948-1997". International Sociological Association. p. 16. Retrieved 25 July 2012. 
  6. ^ a b "ISA Statutes". UNESCO. 1950. 
  7. ^ a b c d e f g Jose I. Reguera. "Statutes of the International Sociological Association". International Sociological Association. Retrieved 2012-07-25. 
  8. ^ a b c Platt, Jennifer (1998). "History of ISA: 1948-1997". International Sociological Association. p. 17. Retrieved 25 July 2012. 
  9. ^ Platt, Jennifer (1998). "History of ISA: 1948-1997". International Sociological Association. p. 25. Retrieved 25 July 2012. 
  10. ^ Platt, Jennifer (1998). "History of ISA: 1948-1997". International Sociological Association. p. 46. Retrieved 25 July 2012. 
  11. ^ a b Platt, Jennifer (1998). "History of ISA: 1948-1997". International Sociological Association. p. 41. Retrieved 25 July 2012. 
  12. ^ "International Sociology". SAGE Publications. 
  13. ^ a b Jose I. Reguera. "ISA - International Sociological Association: International Sociology Review of Books Call for Books". International Sociological Association. Retrieved 2012-07-25. 
  14. ^ Jose I. Reguera. "ISA - International Sociological Association: SAGE Studies in International Sociology". International Sociological Association. Retrieved 2012-07-25. 
  15. ^ Jose I. Reguera (2012-06-12). "ISA - International Sociological Association: OSA Handbooks". International Sociological Association. Retrieved 2012-07-25. 
  16. ^ Jose I. Reguera (1996-11-27). "ISA - International Sociological Association: Code of Ethics". International Sociological Association. Retrieved 2012-07-26. 
  17. ^ Jose I. Reguera. "Global Dialogue. Newsletter for the International Sociological Association". International Sociological Association. Retrieved 2012-07-25. 
  18. ^ "Universities in Crisis". Isa-sociology.org. Retrieved 2012-07-25. 
  19. ^ "International Sociological Association (ISA) - Wall". Facebook. 2012-07-04. Retrieved 2012-07-25. 
  20. ^ "ISA - International Sociological Association". International Sociological Association: Public Sociology Live. Retrieved 2012-07-25. 
  21. ^ "ISA - International Sociological Association". International Sociological Association: Journeys Through Sociology. Retrieved 2012-07-25. 
  22. ^ "ISA - International Sociological Association: Sociotube". International Sociological Association. Retrieved 2012-07-25. 
  23. ^ Platt, Jennifer (1998). "History of ISA: 1948-1997". International Sociological Association. p. 23. Retrieved 25 July 2012. 
  24. ^ Platt, Jennifer (1998). "History of ISA: 1948-1997". International Sociological Association. p. 63. Retrieved 25 July 2012. 
  25. ^ Jose I. Reguera. "ISA World Congresses of Sociology". International Sociological Association. Retrieved 2012-07-25. 
  26. ^ a b "Books of the Century". International Sociological Association. Retrieved 10 August 2012. 
  27. ^ "Department Activities, CSUDH Sociology". California State University, Dominguez Hills. Retrieved 10 August 2012. 
  28. ^ a b "Top Ten Books of the Century". International Sociological Association. Retrieved 10 August 2012. 
  29. ^ "ISA - International Sociological Association: Books of the Century". International Sociological Association. 1998. Retrieved 2012-07-25. 
  30. ^ Germov, John; Zlatko Skrbis (1 September 2004). "The Most Influential books in Australian sociology (MIBAS), 1963-2003". Journal of Sociology 40 (3): 283–303. doi:10.1177/1440783304046282. Retrieved 10 August 2012. 
  31. ^ Platt, Jennifer (1998). "History of ISA: 1948-1997". International Sociological Association. p. 31. Retrieved 25 July 2012. 
  32. ^ Platt, Jennifer (1998). "History of ISA: 1948-1997". International Sociological Association. p. 59. Retrieved 25 July 2012. 
  33. ^ a b c Jose I. Reguera. "ISA - International Sociological Association: Internal Organization". International Sociological Association. Retrieved 2012-07-25. 
  34. ^ Delbert C. Miller; Neil J. Salkind (16 January 2002). Handbook of Research Design and Social Measurement. SAGE. p. 744. ISBN 978-0-7619-2046-5. Retrieved 10 August 2012. 
  35. ^ a b Platt, Jennifer (1998). "History of ISA: 1948-1997". International Sociological Association. p. 39. Retrieved 25 July 2012. 
  36. ^ a b Jose I. Reguera. "ISA - Research Committees". International Sociological Association: Research Committees. Retrieved 2012-07-25. 
  37. ^ Platt, Jennifer (1998). "History of ISA: 1948-1997". International Sociological Association. p. 60. Retrieved 25 July 2012. 
  38. ^ a b Jose I. Reguera. "ISA - International Sociological Association: Privacy Policy". International Sociological Association. Retrieved 2012-07-25. 
  39. ^ Platt, Jennifer (1998). "History of ISA: 1948-1997". International Sociological Association. p. 44. Retrieved 25 July 2012. 
  40. ^ "Member Associations and Unions". International Social Science Council. Retrieved 10 August 2012. 
  41. ^ "ISA Presidents". International Sociological Association. Retrieved 2012-07-25. 

External links[edit]