Social Science Matters

The College of Social and Behavioral Sciences is home to a broad range of approaches to social science, all of which we celebrate, from purely theoretical and interpretive research to all manner of qualitative and quantitative research methodologies. One of our priorities is to ensure that this exciting social science research connects with the public while showing the relevance of the social sciences to everyday lives and policy. 

Social Science Matters Speaker Series

Every year, SBS sponsors a speaker series showing how social science matters in our society. Departments invite expert speakers to campus that showcase the contributions of the various social science disciplines to important issues and demonstrate the cross-disciplinary connections within and beyond SBS.  This popular series carried the theme of Inequality in 2014-15, Resistance in 2015-16, and Migration in 2016-17. This academic year, speakers will focus on pressing issues around gender, race, and social class inequality. See below for the schedule of events.

Perspectives on Universal Basic Income: Annual Freedman Lecture
October 16, 2017 - 4:00 PM, Commonwealth Honors College Events Hall

Claudia Goldin Presents - Career and Family: Collision or Confluence 
October 23, 2017 - 4:00 PM, Marriott Room, Campus Center

Paul Krugman Presents at the Annual Economics Gamble Lecture
October 26, 2017 - 6:00 PM, Mullins Center

Jennifer Lawless Presents - Why Women Don’t Run for Office and What Happens When They Do
November 9, 2017 - 4:00 PM, Commonwealth Honors College Events Hall 

Dorothy Roberts Presents - Fatal Invention: Re-creating Race in the Genomic Era
February 22, 2018 - 4:30 PM, Cape Cod Lounge

Connecting Social Science Matters to our Curriculum

Topics related to this year's Social Science Matters series will be incorporated into a number of our classes, such as:

  • POLI SCI 395F Women in Politics
  • SOCIOL 283 Gender and Society
  • COMM  297RR Special Topics- Race, Inequality and Representation
  • COMM  797A Special Topics- Race, Media & Politics
  • LEGAL  397RE Special Topics- Law and Politics of Race and Ethnicity in the U.S.
  • POLISCI  392T Seminar- African American Political Thought
  • SOCIOL  106 Race,Gender, Class & Ethnicity
  • SOCIOL  245 Race & Society
  • SOCIOL  392J Seminar- Race and Policing
  • SOCIOL  461 Seminar on Race and Racism
  • STPEC  191STPEC1 FYS - The American Nightmare: Police Killings & Incarceration in the U.S.

How to Submit a Speaker or Event Suggestion

We welcome suggestions from SBS faculty members for next year’s series. Suggestions are reviewed by the SBS Leadership Council and SBS Chairs. Your nomination can be for a specific speaker or for a panel featuring 2-3 speakers on a particular topic to be debated. Criteria for successful submission are as follows:

  1. The speaker should be a high-profile, scholarly social scientist who is very well known across disciplines.
  2. The proposed event should draw a large multi-disciplinary audience, also attracting students and community members.  
  3. Relevance and importance of speaker/topic
  4. Ability to articulate the contributions of social science in an engaging way
  5. The speaker or event will be co-hosted across at least two SBS departments

Submit A Speaker