ASR News & Announcements

Rachel Kraus, Executive Officer

The theme for this year’s annual meeting is “Strengthening Weak Ties to other Sociological Subdisciplines.” The meeting will be held August 11-13, 2018 at the Sofitel Philadelphia Hotel, located in the heart of downtown.  Our President, Daniel V. A. Olson, and Program Chair, Jerry Park, have promised to make this year’s meeting unique in terms of both its intellectual content and social gatherings.  We can look forward to series of Presidential Sessions focused on strengthening the intersection of the sociology of religion with other sociological disciplines.  As usual, we will begin our meeting with an Opening Night Reception on Saturday, August 11, which will include an awards ceremony recognizing the winners of the McNamara Student Paper Award, Distinguished Article Award, and ASR’s newest recognition, the Lifetime Achievement Award.  The Furfey Lecture will be delivered by Jennifer Glass, Barbara Bush Regents Professor of Liberal Arts and Executive Director of the Council on Contemporary Families at the University of Texas – Austin.

All ASR members may submit paper abstracts (until April 30, 2018) and register for the meeting through the Member Portal of the ASR website (  Hotel reservations can be made by visiting the Annual Meeting page on the ASR website.  Please consider supporting our association by staying at the ASR hotel and making your reservations as early as possible so you can secure a room at the low ASR rate.

Now is the time for the ASR elections and this year we will elect our next President-Elect and three new Council members.  The person elected as President-Elect will take office as President-Elect at the end of this year’s annual meeting in Philadelphial, at which time our current President-Elect, Paula Nesbitt, assumes the duties of President.  The three new Council members elected will also begin their terms at the end of this year’s annual meeting and continue through the first Council meeting of 2021.  Just like last year, all members of ASR are eligible and encouraged to vote in the election through the Member Portal of the website (an email will be sent when the portal is available). Elections will close on June 1, 2018, and the winners will be announced shortly thereafter.


Please consider applying or nominating people for any of the following grants and awards:

Joseph H. Fichter Research Grants are available to ASR members involved in promising sociological research on women in religion or on the intersection between religion and gender or religion and sexualities.  For the 2018 competition, a total of $12,000 is available to be awarded.  Dissertation research qualifies for funding, as does postdoctoral research by junior and senior scholars.  See the Research Grants & Awards section of the website for instructions and details.

Ralph A. Gallagher Travel Grants are offered to assist faculty colleagues from outside North America and graduate students to attend the ASR annual meeting.  Gallagher grants are intended to help defray the cost of participating in the conference.  Gallagher grantees must be members of ASR and have had a paper accepted for presentation at the meeting.  This year, awards for graduate students will be distributed in the form of comped hotel nights (up to three nights) at the ASR hotel, and awards for international faculty will be distributed in the form of comped ASR hotel nights (up to three nights) and up to $500 to be used toward airfare.    See the Research Grants & Awards section of the website for instructions and details.

The Lifetime Achievement Award for Contributions to the Sociology of Religion is an award that recognizes a career or a long period of contribution – it is designed to consider an awardee’s corpus of work as a whole.  See the Research Grants & Awards section of the website for instructions and details.

Finally, the Robert J. McNamara Student Paper Award in the amount of $500 is given annually to recognize an outstanding graduate student member’s paper in the sociology of religion.  If the winner of this award agrees to attend the meeting to present the paper, s/he can receive an additional $500 toward the cost of a room at the conference hotel.  See the Research Grants & Awards section of the website for instructions and details.