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The Social Science Working Group

The Social Science Working Group (SSWG) of the Society for Conservation Biology (SCB) is a global community of conservation scientists and practitioners. Since the SSWG was established in 2003, we have been deeply committed to strengthening conservation social science and its application to conservation practice around the globe. SSWG is administered by a Board of Directors and various Board Committees. SSWG catalyzes forums and mechanisms for information exchange, promotes dialogue and debate, shares career opportunities and builds social science capacity among conservation practitioners. Learn more about us.

Please read our Letter to the Community regarding SSWG's stance on justice, equity, diversity, and inclusion (JEDI) - we also welcome your ideas and engagement going forward.

Join the SSWG Board! We are seeking nominations until 3rd September 2020

To help provide leadership as part of the SSWG Board, we seek nominations of dedicated, creative, and enthusiastic individuals for one open seat on the SSWG Board to serve an almost 3-year term beginning November 2020 and ending 30th of June 2023. We welcome self-nominations and ask that you do NOT nominate someone else without their permission. We also strongly encourage nominations of individuals from the SCB sections of Asia, Africa, Europe, and Latin America and the Caribbean. All nominees must be SCB and SSWG members in good standing. Check your membership status on SCB's homepage. Being a member of SSWG does not cost anything beyond an SCB membership, and we encourage you to talk with SSWG officers directly if the SCB membership fee poses any sort of barrier to your participation during the proposed time of service – we are committed to seeking solutions.  

Nominees should possess: (1) a demonstrated commitment to SCB and SSWG (both the missions and the organizations); (2) sufficient time/capacity to provide leadership; (3) research and/or practitioner experience relevant to career stage. Time commitments for Board positions vary month-to-month (approximately 4-10 hours per month), and we are a volunteer group that recognizes the challenges that volunteer work poses. We ask potential nominees to think carefully about their ability to make sufficient time for SSWG Board activities before applying, as we are a dynamic and energetic group working on a multitude of activities. SSWG Board members are expected to attend monthly virtual meetings and encouraged to attend one in-person meeting annually (when applicable outside the current pandemic), and must serve as the Chair or member of a standing SSWG Committee, serve as an SSWG liaison to SCB committees or conference planning efforts, develop and implement SSWG strategic plan and Committee work plans, and support the SSWG's goals in the following five areas:           

  1. Science: Advance scientific understanding of conservation as a social process.  
  2. Policy: Inform conservation decision-making through scientific dialogue and stakeholder engagement.  
  3. Capacity-building: Enhance the ability of scholars and practitioners to understand and address the social dimensions of biodiversity conservation.  
  4. Membership: Expand, diversify, and engage the SSWG membership.  
  5. Organizational development: Increase the capacity of the SSWG to achieve its mission. 

The SSWG Board consists of 12 members, including 3 officers (President, Past President, and Secretary) who all serve 3-year terms – current Board members would be happy to answer any of your questions. 

We request nominees to send a CV or resume AND a statement of interest detailing past involvement with SCB and future vision for SSWG (250 words maximum) to Georgina Gurney (SSWG Membership and Nominations Committee Chair, by 3rd September 2020. Please also indicate when you last attended a SCB meeting or whether you intend to attend one in the near future, the time commitment you are willing to make to board-related tasks, and committees on which you may be interested in participating or leading. The nominations committee will take into account geographic, disciplinary, and professional diversity of all possible nominees before posting the official slate of candidates (usually twice the # of open positions) on which members will be able to vote during the actual special election, which will start after the September deadline. 

Finally, if you would like to gain some experience with a specific committee of SSWG (but not act as a Board Member), we encourage you to directly contact the Chair(s) of the SSWG committee(s) of interest to you to learn more.

Thanks for your consideration!

Rina Hauptfeld, President, on behalf of the SSWG Board

Connect with SSWG


Twitter:              @SCB_SSWG, #consocsci