Institutes, Centers, and Services
The following Institutes, Centers, and Services are housed in the College of Social and Behavioral Sciences.
Center for Economic Development (CED)
Center for Heritage and Society
Center for Latin American, Caribbean and Latino Studies
Center for Public Policy and Administration (CPPA)
Center for Research on Families (CRF)
Center for Rural Massachusetts (CRM)
Institute for Social Science Research (ISSR)
Labor Relations and Research Center (LRRC)
Nanoscience and Society Research Group (NanoSRG)
National Center for Digital Government
National Center for Technology and Dispute Resolution
Political Economy Research Institute (PERI)
Qualitative Data Analysis Program
UMass Amherst Archaeological Field School
UMass Archaeological Services
- Center for Economic Development (CED)
The Center for Economic Development is a research and community-oriented technical assistance center that is partially funded by the Economic Development Administration, U.S. Department of Commerce. As an EDA Center housed at the Department of Landscape Architecture and Regional Planning, it fits well with the department's long tradition of outreach to Massachusetts' cities and towns, and is well suited to meet EDA's mission, goals and objectives. Its faculty and students have worked on economic development issues in more than 200 cities and towns in the past ten years. As well, its faculty has specializations that include industrial development, retail/commercial development, tourism, marketing, employment training, quantitative analysis and data analysis.
- Center for Heritage and Society
The UMass Amherst Center for Heritage and Society (CHS) is a multidisciplinary initiative to craft new approaches to heritage conservation and communication around the world. CHS offers research opportunities for scholars working in heritage related fields such as archaeology, history, environmental science, landscape architecture and regional planning, European studies, Native American Indian Studies, Afro-American Studies, Classics, legal studies, and public policy. Additionally, the Center provides undergraduate and graduate students with training and experience in heritage planning and management.
Read about the Center's first major conference on heritage conflict and consensus, held in the fall of 2009.
- Center for Latin American, Caribbean and Latino Studies
CLACLS promotes research, training, and public engagement on the histories, cultures, and politics of Latin American and Caribbean peoples across the Americas and throughout the world. Bridging the divide that historically has separated Latin American, Caribbean, and Latino Studies as institutionalized knowledge formations with distinctive intellectual genealogies, political trajectories, and bureaucratic moorings at U.S. universities is central to our mission. The Center seeks to be a hemispheric, crossborder space for critical reflection, exchange, and intellectual production. We aim to engage in genuine interdisciplinary work, fostering the creative convergence of discipline-based knowledges. CLACLS is committed to sustaining links with Latin American and Caribbean communities in the U.S. and across the Americas, as well as to bringing the alternative knowledge produced in those communities to bear on our teaching and research.
- Center for Public Policy and Administration (CPPA)
The Center for Public Policy and Administration is the hub of interdisciplinary public policy research, teaching, and engagement at the University of Massachusetts Amherst. CPPA attracts high-caliber national and international students to its Masters of Public Policy and Administration (MPPA) program. CPPA also offers a certificate in public policy available to UMass Amherst undergraduates. Home to a growing number of research initiatives, CPPA houses the National Center for Digital Government, Science & Technology in Society and the Public Engagement Project.
- Center for Research on Families (CRF)
The Center for Research on Families (CRF) actively supports and disseminates social and behavioral sciences research on issues relevant to families. CRF is an interdisciplinary research center whose mission is to build a strong network of faculty with expertise in family research who are able to generate collaborative, multidisciplinary research projects, and to create unique programming to bring research to policy-makers and the public. As a basic unit of human and animal life, research on families at CRF encompasses disciplines as diverse as the life sciences, social sciences, public health and nursing, education, and natural resources. This rich mix of disciplines has been a key to faculty enthusiasm for CRF.
- Center for Rural Massachusetts (CRM)
CRM was established in 1985 because a new set of problems had arisen in the rural part of the state, driven by rapid economic growth in urban areas, a widespread belief that uncontrolled growth posed a major threat to natural and built rural environments, major changes in the rural economy, and concerns about the welfare of rural residents. In its first decade, the Center's efforts addressed these problems through a program of applied research focusing on ways that growth could be managed and controlled through actions of rural communities. Starting in the mid-1990s, the Center changed in two ways. One was to provide assistance and support to two new programs directed at rural Massachusetts communities. One of these is the Massachusetts Citizen Planner Training Collaborative. The second change was tighter integration with activities in the Department of Landscape Architecture and Regional Planning.
- Institute for Social Science Research (ISSR)
ISSR facilitates social science research and methods across the University of Massachusetts. By taking guidance from our research faculty's interests and supporting their efforts, the Institute draws its dynamic strengths and directions from the evolving enterprise of contemporary social research. ISSR supports the research mission of social science on campus by offering:
- grant management
- qualitative and quantitative research training opportunities
- grant mentoring programs
- workshops and speakers
- methods and data analysis/programming consulting services
- support for interdisciplinary research teams
- Labor Relations and Research Center
Founded in 1964, LRRC is an integrated program of graduate education, research, and direct service to workers and the labor movement.The Center's faculty and staff also conduct national research about work and labor, including research on organizing, strategic campaigns, labor and community coalitions, living wage campaigns, and globalization. Much of this work has been funded by the labor movement. We also offer research services in support of organizing, bargaining, and in the policy arena for regional and local unions and state and central labor bodies.
- Nanoscience and Society Research Group (NanoSRG)
In 2005, a five-year $16 million grant from the National Science Foundation (NSF) and an additional $7 million in university and state funding established the Center for Hierarchical Manufacturing (CHM) at the University of Massachusetts Amherst. The Science, Technology and Society (STS) Initiative shares in this award and is an active partner in the CHM. The CHM award supports the STS Initiative’s Nanoscience and Society Research Group (NanoSRG). NanoSRG brings together faculty from five research centers and seven degree-granting departments and programs within the College of Social and Behavioral Sciences and includes faculty from political science, sociology, economics, psychology, anthropology, communication, legal studies, natural resources conservation and history. NanoSRG faculty are engaged with several dimensions of the societal implications of nanotechnology.
- National Center for Digital Government
Established in 2002 with support from the National Science Foundation, NCDG is based in the Center for Public Policy and Administration. Its mission is to build global research capacity, to advance practice, and to strengthen the network of researchers and practitioners engaged in building and using technology and government. NCDG strives to apply and extend the social sciences for research at the intersection of governance, institutions and information technologies.
- National Center for Technology and Dispute Resolution
The National Center for Technology and Dispute Resolution supports and sustains the development of information technology applications, institutional resources, and theoretical and applied knowledge for better understanding and managing conflict. The Center believes that networked information technology can be uniquely leveraged to expand and improve conflict management resources and expertise. We are only at the beginning of understanding how individuals separated by great physical, cultural, or technological distances can utilize resources and expertise virtually. We conceive of the online environment as a "place" where increasingly powerful tools will be available for working to find solutions to many forms of offline/online conflict, whether they are public or private, whether they involve commercial transactions or other social relationships, and whether they are international or domestic.
- Political Economy Research Institute (PERI)
PERI promotes human and ecological well-being through original research. Our approach is to translate what we learn into workable policy proposals that are capable of improving life on our planet today and in the future. In the words of the late Professor Robert Heilbroner, we “strive to make a workable science out of morality.” Established in 1998, PERI is an independent unit of UMass Amherst with close ties to the Department of Economics. Since its founding, PERI has become a leading source of research and policy initiatives on issues of globalization, unemployment, financial market instability, central bank policy, living wages and decent work, and the economics of peace, development, and the environment.
- Qualitative Data Analysis Program
QDAP-UMass offers a rigorous approach to coding and analyzing text. From biomedical, public health, and educational research, to studies in the behavioral, computational, and social sciences, effective qualitative data analysis plays a critical role. Accurate and reliable coding using computers is central to the content analysis process. For new and experienced researchers, learning advanced project management skills adds hours of struggle in trial-and-error sessions. Experienced coders and project managers can deliver the data you need in a timely and expert manner. For this reason, we have created the Qualitative Data Analysis Program at the University of Massachusetts Amherst.
- Science, Technology & Society Initiative
The Science, Technology & Society Initiative (STS) promotes multidisciplinary collaboration among the natural, physical and social sciences, engineering and public policy. It is a hub for interdisciplinary research on the Internet and society, the societal implications of nanotechnology, and ethics.
- UMass Amherst Summer Field Schools
Anthropology offers several field programs that offer in-depth training, including the Field School in Archaeological Heritage, the Field and Lab Methods in Bioarchaeology and Forensic Anthropology , the Archaeological Field School Israel, and the Madagascar, Past and Present: Biodiversity, Extinction, and Conservation.
- UMass Archaeological Services
Archaeological Services is a consulting organization with expertise in a wide variety of cultural resource management surveys. The staff has completed more than 500 regulatory compliance research projects over the past two decades. They offer extensive experience with federal and state regulatory standards for survey project management, research methodology, fieldwork, analysis, and correspondence with State Historic Preservation Officers, and is committed to timely, responsive action to serve the compliance needs of our clients.
- UMass Poll
The UMass Poll is an effort by scholars at UMass to study public opinion about a variety of political and social questions affecting the New England region. Panelists are recruited online and may, occasionally, be re-contacted to determine whether they are interested in participating in additional surveys.