Statement of the Council of the Society for Social Studies of Science (4S) regarding political developments in the United States
The Society for Social Studies of Science (4S) is an international association that brings together diverse researchers, teachers and practitioners who study the social aspects of science, technology, and medicine. 4S members live and do research around the world, and have developed a rich body of scholarship that demonstrates the value of cultural, intellectual, and political pluralism in all domains of society, including education and scientific research, technological innovation and industry, health care, and environmental protection. As such, 4S aspires to be a fully inclusive organization, and supports the free movement of people and ideas across boundaries of all kinds. In light of recent political developments in the United States, we reaffirm the internationalism of 4S, in fact and spirit, as well as our deep appreciation for the diverse experiences and perspectives that 4S members bring to our collective work. We are committed to justice within and beyond the worlds of scholarship that comprise our Society.
The 4S Council will be considering various ways in which Society members can express their opposition to U.S. presidential policies, particularly the discriminatory Executive Order of 27 January 2017, which restricts travel into the U.S. by those from seven majority Muslim countries. We will also be joining with sister societies, based in the United States and around the world, to affirm our support for the protection of academic freedom and human rights and to register our condemnation of this Order, and of other unjust and unlawful developments as they may arise.
Most immediately, we would like to open a channel of communication regarding concerns about this year’s 4S conference to be held in Boston from August 30 - September 2nd. We encourage anyone planning to submit an abstract to do so, even if they may be prevented from attending the conference owing either to border restrictions or to matters of conscience. If the Executive Order remains in place into the summer, those unable or unwilling to attend will be included in the program, and their decisions regarding participation noted as requested.
Please send specific expressions of concern, or suggestions for 4S Council actions, to Steve Zehr, 4S Secretary, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
yours in solidarity,
Lucy and Kim
Lucy Suchman, 4S President & Kim Fortun, 4S President-elect