Special Interest Groups

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Mission
As the membership in SRA grows, SRA encourages the formation of Special Interest Groups (SIGs). A SIG begins with a subgroup or a community within SRA with a particular interest in a specific area. This area can be broad (e.g., emerging adulthood) or narrower (e.g., adolescent aggression and the media). Members of a SIG meet to discuss current and future research or applications in order to promote new ideas and creative solutions within their particular area of interest. SIGs often meet regularly, particularly at the SRA or other conferences. SIGs are designed to promote additional meetings, publications, and other activities. Ideally these may begin locally but would become larger and more global. They should provide opportunities for sharing expertise and first-hand knowledge, meeting new people with similar interests, and mentoring students.

In contrast to Study Groups within the SRA, SIGs are designed to be maintained over a longer period of time. Whereas Study Groups are designed for the accomplishment of specific tasks and may complete their tasks within a short time (generally, 2 to 4 years), SIGs are broader, more inclusive, and provide an enduring and known forum for continued discussion. SIGs are designed as a place to spark new ideas and creative solutions. Therefore, SIGs may begin with SRA members and must have a designated chairperson who is a member of the SRA, but are encouraged to welcome membership from any SRA member, and may welcome members who are not affiliated with SRA. Students are welcomed as member of SIGs regardless of their membership in SRA.

It is possible for SIGs and Study Groups to be connected. For example, an idea for a more targeted Study Group might evolve among some members of a given SIG, and they may decide to pursue the time-limited project distinct from the larger SIG. Similarly, one product from a Study Group might be the establishment of an ongoing SIG.

Procedures
SRA supports SIGs by assigning space for them to meet prior to the SRA biennial meeting (depending on space availability). To reserve preconference space, contact the SRA Biennial Meeting Offices well in advance (instructions will be on the SRA meeting webpage; note that a fee is charged for room setup). SRA also provides information to its membership about SIGs on the society website (www.s-r-a.org) and in the meeting program book. SIGs may also arrange with SRA to have announcements posted on the announcements page.

To establish a SIG with SRA, there are two simple steps:

  1. Contact aglaspie@s-r-a.org to describe the SIG and to identify a chair or contact person for the SIG.
  2. Provide one or two paragraphs to describe the SIG that can be placed on the SRA website. 

What will SRA ask of SIGs?

  1. Provide a one or two paragraph report about activities after each biennial meeting. This short report should describe the chair, contact details, membership numbers, summary of activities within the past year and brief plans for the future. This should be sent to aglaspie@s-r-a.org.
  2. If the SIG holds a meeting at a time other than prior to the biennial meeting, the chair (or another member) needs to let the SRA office know for insurance purposes.
  3. A SIG cannot use SRA’s name in ways that create legal liabilities or results in substantial income for the SIG or its members.