Dear SAA Members,
To further our aim to be a more equitable and inclusive organization, SAA needs a better understanding of the diversity of identities, scholarly interests, and employment circumstances of the membership. The SAA Staff and the Diversity Committee have developed a new, optional series of demographic questions that will appear in the standard form we all complete when renewing membership or registering for the annual conference. This new information will be helpful in allowing us all to:
- map the demographics of our membership over time,
- better support the needs of BIPOC members, LGBTQ+ members, and members from other marginalized groups,
- develop initiatives and programs that increase diversity within our organization,
- identify ways our organization may present challenges or obstacles to accessing our programs and resources,
- better understand the scholarly and professional interests of our members, and
- develop programs that engage the membership’s changing scholarly and professional interests
The new series of questions is also designed to make the existing, underutilized, membership directory more user-friendly by allowing members to search for each other using various keywords such as stage of career, scholarly interests, or identity categories. A more replete and usable directory will enable members to foster community and affinity groups within SAA, and promote the expertise and accomplishments of SAA members for the purposes of collaboration, speaking engagements, consultation, or other employment.
We realize that questions about your interests, professional status, and other aspects of your identity ask for highly personal information. The questionnaire will clearly indicate what information will be visible only to SAA staff, and what information will be visible to other members. Members will have the ability to opt-out of questions. Members will also be able to suggest questions or answer options that could or should be included in the future. We welcome your feedback on the form and we look forward to sharing more about ourselves and learning more about you.
If you have questions about the questionnaire, please contact the SAA office at firstname.lastname@example.org.