By Robert A. Rubinstein
The Maxwell School of Syracuse University
Anthropology’s engagement with public policy will feature prominently during the 2012 annual meeting in Baltimore later this year. A little more than 125 papers, in about 20 sessions, will apply anthropological approaches to a wide range of public policy discussions, including health, immigration, climate change, and disaster response. These papers and sessions were self-identified during the submission process, and are marked with a star in the program. Other papers reporting on activities that engage public policy questions, but not self-identified by their authors, will be presented throughout the course of the meeting.
The Society for Applied Anthropology, Committee on Public Policy works to enhance anthropological engagement with public policy issues. The Society’s executive board has charged the committee with supporting public policy teaching and training. To that end, the committee is sponsoring a Roundtable on Anthropological Approaches to Public Policy Teaching and Training at the 2012 annual meeting in Baltimore. The Roundtable will take place from 12:00-1:20 pm on Thursday, 29 March. The format of the Roundtable will be informal. Gregory Button (University of Tennessee), Sandra Lane (Falk School of Syracuse University), Laura McNamara (Sandia National Laboratory), and Rebecca Peters (Maxwell School of Syracuse University) will each offer brief reflections on their experiences, teaching, training, and working in public policy settings. The bulk of the session will be devoted to discussion with those attending the Roundtable. The committee hopes that the Roundtable will encourage continuing discussion of issues relating to bringing anthropology to public policy education, and spark contributions to the SfAA clearinghouse on public policy teaching and training maintained by the committee. We look forward to a wide-ranging and productive meeting and hope that SfAA members will find these policy-identified papers and sessions engaging and rewarding.