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Committee Updates: May 2020

Committee UpdateUpdates from SPSP committees for May 2020

International Committee – Our goal is to help psychological science be about all people, across world regions and cultures. This year, we are launching a new International Bridge Building Travel Award and an enhanced International Travel AwardWe are also connecting SPSP with the UN, and pursuing a number of other projects, including working with the publication committee to encourage broadening of the global representation of participants and researchers in papers published in SPSP journals.

Convention Committee – The Convention Committee is preparing guidelines and the submission portal for the 2021 convention. We are currently planning for an in-person event, in Austin, Texas, February 11-13; however, SPSP is also exploring online or hybrid options if they are needed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Regardless of the format, we plan to offer the same types of programming as in past conventions (e.g., symposia, posters, professional development sessions). We are also working to make the convention more inclusive, including to those working outside more traditional university settings. And we encourage programming that highlights the diversity of SPSP, our research, and Austin as our local host community. The portal will be open June 30 - July 21. We look forward to receiving your submissions!  

Diversity and Climate Committee – This quarter the DCC has continued to act on its mission to broaden participation in social/personality psychology through two endeavors: (1) processing feedback about DCC events at the 2020 SPSP convention, and (2) redesigning the Social-Personality Undergraduate Research (SPUR) program so that it functions as a combined virtual and in-person research experience that enhances community for trainees. These efforts are generously supported by SPSP members and new donations are always welcome here.

Early Career Committee – The ECC has been busy looking over the survey feedback from SPSP 2020 to get new ideas for how our committee can serve our members best! These past few months, we got an early career designation added to the SPSP conference program for the first time this year and we have been busy writing and brainstorming newsletter ideas! We also are trying to compile ways SPSP can help early career scholars during COVID, so please email us any ideas you may have! 

Fundraising and Development Committee – The Development Committee has been working on selecting new honorees for the Heritage Wall of Fame. SPSP’s professional staff has developed a detailed plan for our annual fundraising initiatives.  During the COVID-19 pandemic, however, SPSP’s focus is on connecting with and supporting our members.  The Development Committee is working with the Executive Committee to adjust our fundraising goals and plans as we get more information about how our membership is affected by the pandemic.

Government Relations Committee – The new Government Relations Committee had a busy first year and is now moving forward with several exciting initiatives. In the coming months, we will be launching a second Social Science Vignette challenge, focusing on the role our field can play in the response to COVID-19. We will also submit a professional development symposium for SPSP 2021 to start a broader discussion about how our field can interface with public policy.  

Professional Development Committee – This spring we welcomed two new members to the PD committee: John Sakaluk (University of Victoria) and Erica Schneid (Lehigh University). After a very successful SPSP meeting in New Orleans—with 20 PD sessions and 4 workshops—the PD committee is already busy planning for the 2021 convention in Austin. In addition, because most people are currently socially isolating during the COVID-19 pandemic, we plan to offer more online content than usual this summer, including the ever-popular #SPSPchats on Twitter and more webinars. Stay tuned for details!

Student Committee – The Student Committee has been busy preparing for the 2021 convention and related events, including an abstract check service available to all student members, which will be open in the upcoming weeks. In addition to the usual programs, in an effort to support student members during the circumstances imposed by the COVID-19 crisis, the Student Committee is developing and getting ready to coordinate multiple remote writing groups exclusive to SPSP student members.


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