The objectives of the Association are to: foster the development of rural sociology; further the application of sociological inquiry to the improvement of the quality of rural life; and provide a mechanism whereby rural sociologists can generate dialogue and useful exchange.
The Editor-in-Chief of Agriculture and Human Values is very
pleased to announce a Special Collection of essays on COVID-19, Agriculture,
and Food, in Agriculture and Human Values.
This collection assembles in-the-moment essays and commentaries from over 120
scholars, authors, practitioners, farmers, activists, and analysts of
agriculture and food systems around the world. Please find attached the
complete list of contributors, listed in alphabetical order (corresponding
author last name) and titles of the essays in the Special Collection. The
list is prefaced by my brief editorial introduction.
I am very pleased to let you know that Springer has agreed to allow all
articles in this collection to be freely available, for download and viewing,
for the duration of the COVID-19 pandemic. You can find the essays here
(note there are four pages):
As previously announced, the IRSA Council
recently decided unanimously to postpone the XV World Congress in Cairns due to
COVID-19. The XV World Congress is now scheduled
for July 6th through the 10th of 2021 in Cairns,
Australia. The venue remains the Pullman Cairns International Hotel.
We will maintain the basic program framework
that was originally developed. All sessions and abstracts accepted for
IRSA 2020 will be transferred to the provisional program for IRSA 2021.
However, spaces will be available for
additional oral presentations. We anticipate that the Congress organizers will
be able to welcome new abstract submissions beginning June
We ask those who want to attend the Congress as a presenter to visit the Congress website at https://www.irsa2021.com/.
The Congress website provides new
time-lines for registration for those who have not registered yet and other
important information such as for entry visas and ETAS, accommodations, and so
The spread of COVID-19 has
highlighted various problems, which are hidden behind conventional
socio-economic systems. As for agriculture and rural society, challenges such
as vulnerability of current agri-food systems, social exclusion and prejudice
to poor and essential workers, frowning on the weak, concentration of disasters
or calamity just same as bioconcentration have all been made more apparent.
COVID-19 is forcing us to reconsider relations between global and local,
central governments and local governments, rural and urban societies. We need
serious reflection and a bold transformation of conventional socio-economic
systems, including agri-food systems, which until now have been based on the
principles of efficiency and profit maximization through selection and
At the 2021 Congress, I am sure
there will be a lot of studies about the impacts of COVID-19 and perspectives
post or with new Corona virus. I hope for an aggressive discussion on these
on-going issues in Cairns.
President of IRSA
The XV World Congress of Rural Sociology (8-12 July 2020, Cairns, Australia) calls for session proposals. See attached IRSA2020 call for session proposals (PDF) for further details. Proposal deadline is 26 April 2019.
The Latin American Rural Sociology Association (ALASRU) would like to remind rural sociologists everywhere of its upcoming conference to be held from November 25th through the 30th in Montevideo, Uruguay. More information about the conference can be found at http://alasru.org/index.php/congresos.
ALASRU is also the proud publisher of the Revista Latinoamericana de Estudios Rurales. This journal is published on-line and the most recent issue can be found at http://www.ceil-conicet.gov.ar/ojs/index.php/revistaalasru/index
Whose versions of sustainability count in the urban century? How does spatial disadvantage intersect with injustices based on gender, ethnic, linguistic, religious and other dimensions of social difference? What opportunities do flows of people, capital, information and commodities between urban and rural spaces present for sustainable rural development?
As a delegate to the 2020 World Congress of Rural Sociology you will consider these and many other questions relevant to contemporary rural society.
Our venue, Cairns, sits on the traditional country of the Gimuy Yidinji and Yirrigandji peoples. Sandwiched between two World Heritage Areas – the Great Barrier Reef and the rainforests of Tropical North Queensland – and with a vast rural hinterland, Cairns is a hub for tourism and tropical agriculture at the heart of the Asia Pacific.
For information on key dates, session and paper submissions, travel and accommodation, registration and tours, check the Congress website.
The mid-term meeting of the IRSA Council was held on July 18, 2018 in Toronto, Canada. Click here to read the minutes of that Council Meeting.
By Koichi Ikegami, President of IRSA
I attended the International Conference on ‘Social and Sustainability Science ASEAN 2018: Agri-Food Systems and Rural Sustainability’ at Chulalongkorn University on 23-25 of January 2018. I was invited as President of IRSA. I had a keynote speech entitled as Ensuring Rural Sustainability in the Unequal Worlds. Major points of my speech were as follows; 1) Major Issues in the 21st Century such as Structuration of the North South Problem, Casino Capitalism or Speculative Capitalism, and Global Warming and Climate Change, 2) Flat World, but Unequal World: Other Side of Globalization, 3) Background of Rise of Alternative Movement , 4)Two Examples of alternative movement: Fair Trade and Creation of FEC Sufficient Territory in Higashi-Oumi city, Japan, 5)‘Mura’ Business: Model of Small Business of Village, by Village and for Village. Of course, I mentioned about next World Congress of IRSA, and asked that most of participants there would come to join us in 2020.
On the following day after Conference, I was also asked to give a mini lecture for establishing MOST School. Required theme is “Rural sustainability and contemporary social science approaches”. I did not realize what MOST meant until that time. It was a very new idea for me. MOST is a UNESCO’s intergovernmental science programme on social transformations. As for this regard, it is important to identify to what direction society transforms. The answer is towards sustainable society.
The both events were organized by Chulalongkorn University and UNESCO. There were lots of participants from ASEAN countries. One of my major impressions was that ASEAN countries paid strong attentions to sustainability. One of reasons for such attraction might be adoption of SDGs in 2015 as well as reflection of the results by development-oriented policies.
SDGs include not only poverty and hunger but also gender and partnership as well as sustainable agriculture. It is uncommon in Japan that the so-called Developed Countries such as Japan are involved in SDGs. One example indicates this fact very well, that a mayor of a city in Shiga Prefecture claimed strongly the SDGs-oriented policy by Prefecture Office of Shiga according to his understanding that SDGs addressed only Developing Countries.
It is an urgent task to build sustainable science in social science. I am strongly confident that rural sociology can contribute to accomplishing this task.
The Department of Community and Environmental Sociology at UW-Madison is searching for a tenure-track (junior) faculty member with an outstanding record of teaching and research relevant to environment and health. The position requires a Ph.D. in sociology or related field. Candidates from historically underrepresented groups are strongly encouraged to apply.
The successful candidate will teach and mentor in our top-ranked graduate and undergraduate programs, and will carry out a vigorous research program that improves the ability to understand and intervene on the intersecting social causes and consequences of environmental and health problems. Consistent with the mission of the University of Wisconsin System, the candidate will be committed to service to the community, state, nation, and profession for the benefit of all citizens.
The University of Wisconsin-Madison is committed to eliminating the achievement gap between majority and underrepresented students; recruiting and retaining a more diverse faculty and staff; preparing all students, staff, and faculty to thrive personally and professionally in a diverse, global, interconnected world; and enhancing the campus climate for inclusion.
Review of applications will begin 15 September 2017.
For further details, including instructions to applicants, a list of possible areas of expertise, and the many opportunities for contribution and collaboration at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, please browse for 90808 at http://jobs.wisc.edu.
Questions about the position are welcome, and should be directed to: Search@dces.wisc.edu
Sponsors: RC40 (Agriculture and Food), RC23 (Science and Technology), RC24 (Environment and Society)
Proposal Coordinator: Steven Wolf (RC40)
Abstract & Justification
Analysis of metrics, and standards more generally, has emerged as an important focus within studies of environmental governance. Accountability is attracting increasing attention, as there is a need to address questions about material consequences as part of an effort to move beyond analysis of institutional design.
Heightened attention to metrics has accompanied increasing emphasis on market-based and outcome-based policy designs, but bureaucratic modes of governance have long been predicated on the specification of categories and systems of representation. Metrics can be understood as a resource for democratic accountability, and they can be instruments of authoritarian discipline at a distance. Metrics support empirical analysis and policy learning, but at the same time they obscure knowledge claims, technical uncertainty, and alternative problem definitions. This ambiguity demands attention. Analysis of the metrics of governance, and the governance of metrics, presents opportunities for theoretical and empirical engagement on questions of “Power, Violence, and Justice: Reflections, Responses, and Responsibilities”(2018 Theme).
This collaboration between three ISA Research Committees aims to realize topical, theoretical, and methodological synergies. Linkages between environment and agrifood production and consumption are highlighted in the biological and land-based nature of farming (inputs to agriculture) and by the negative implications of agriculture for water, biodiversity, and climate (outputs of agriculture). Attention to interdependence among discursive constructs, local action, political economic structures, and multiply-scaled material flows characterize both the sociology of environment and agrifood sociology. Science and Technology Studies has served to highlight the socially embedded nature of technical acts including promulgation of standards. Further, this field has championed a methodological commitment to analysis of (grounded, local, actor-centered) practice as a complement to production of overarching histories of design (abstract representations).
The University of Guelph announces a Chair in Food, Policy and Society