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Our theme for this Anthropology News is move and your leadership team and AAA staff are moving things forward! Over the summer we saw several new programs come to fruition and the successful continuation of many others.

A very exciting and much anticipated public education program, World on the Move: 250,000 years of Human Migration™, opened at the Martin Luther King, Jr. Library in Washington, DC. The project has an exciting website that is filled with online resources for libraries, educators, families, and even children, in addition to a virtual review of the exhibit. Alisse Waterston, in highlighting anthropologists’ work on migration and human movement for the “World on the Move: Migration Stories” edition of Open Anthropology 3(1) noted, “World on the move is also about activity―the movement and circulation of people, ideas, languages, and things, including food, cloth, oil, wood, weapons, money and these days, investment capital.” As we wrestle with the global pandemic, war in Ukraine, and continuing violence and economic breakdown that is furthered by broken supply chains, this public project becomes even more relevant in understanding the movement of humans, animals, and things today. The site hosts documentaries, articles, and projects for communities that are exciting resources and provide a wealth of support for our courses, internships, and service opportunities. I encourage you to dive into this amazing new and timely public project.

In our move toward a more inclusive and transparent organization, we are constantly thinking of ways to open the door to communication, including sharing our work as broadly as possible. We are excited about the movement of the Open Anthropology Research Repository to the new open-source platform, Public Knowledge Project, at Simon Fraser University that makes submitting and accessing data, including multimedia formats, easier. We also initiated a new forum for our journal editors to share issues, concerns, and best practices with each other, structured in the same way as the forum for Section presidents. American Anthropologist editor Elizabeth Chin and Executive Board member Petra Kuppinger are cochairing this forum along with support from Janine Chiappa McKenna, director of publishing. If you are or have a journal editor in your Section, please join us for our next forum in September. We look to this new forum to be a great resource as we address the many changes in academic publishing and move into a new publishing agreement this next year.

The established Department Leaders Summer Institute, a program for new chairs or directors of anthropology programs, was held over three days from June 22 to 24. Many thanks to Daniel Ginsberg, director of education and professional practice, for once again putting together an information-packed program to support our many department leaders and to our wonderful presenters Elizabeth Briody, Jim McDonald, Denise Brennan, and Timothy Smith. Participants engaged in discussions, case studies, and workshops on work/life balance, establishing a department culture, implications of accessibility and equity, budgeting, tenure and promotion, alumni relations, working with the administration, and so much more. We were excited to have many chairs who joined us for a second time!

And speaking of leadership, we are gearing up for the AAA nominations season. This is a fantastic opportunity to work alongside your colleagues in advancing our Association’s impact and advocacy. As someone who started working with the AAA as a graduate student representative at the Section level, I can attest to the positive impact that serving has had in my own work. Be on the lookout for more information from Gabriela Vargas-Cetina, the AAA’s secretary and chair of the Nominations Committee.

For many of us, these last few weeks of summer will be filled with analyzing data gathered over the summer to prepare for publication, evaluating company performance and planning for the fourth quarter, finishing contracts and reports, creating or updating our syllabi, and making travel arrangements or WIFI enhancements for our time at the 2022 AAA Annual Meeting, Unsettling Landscapes, in Seattle, Washington, from November 9 through 13. We are very excited about the many activities and enhancements to the Annual Meeting this year and look forward to seeing you all, in person or virtually.

Before moving on, I want to close with a reminder to vote in the national and local mid-term elections on November 8. As the many announcements in our Communities forums note, we are grappling with decisions and pending actions that impact the futures of all of us and our research and advocacy can make a difference. Let’s move our voices to as many forums and opportunities as possible, and let’s work to assure that we vote and that every vote counts.

Credit: Ramona Perez
Photograph of a woman
Ramona Perez, AAA President


Photograph of a woman

Ramona Pérez

Ramona Pérez is AAA president, 2021–2023.

Cite as

Pérez, Ramona. 2022. “Moving Forward with AAA.” Anthropology News website, September 27, 2022.