As one of the rare Québécoise to serve as President of the American Sociological Association, if not the only one, I am thrilled that ASA’s 2017 Annual Meeting will be held in Montréal. I very much hope you will join me there and encourage your colleagues and graduate students to attend as well.
There are many reasons to attend, foremost of course is to learn about the research of our colleagues and to reflect together upon a theme of urgent importance, “Culture, Inequalities and Social Inclusion across the Globe.” The program committee has created a particularly exciting and strong set of invited sessions. And the local committee is busy dreaming up all kinds of interesting events and activities (circus anyone?). You can find additional details about programming and registration at www.asanet.org/annual-meeting-2017. The call for papers was recently posted, with a January 11 deadline.
But there are many more reasons to attend the 2017 Annual Meeting (August 12-15), and some have to do with how special Montréal is during the summer. Anyone who knows about Québec society is aware that its population spends a good part of the year cooped up inside. When summer arrives, the terraces of restaurants are filled to the brim as locals and tourists take their fill of the magical city that is Montréal. Not only is the food amazing, but the stylish clothing and shoes are remarkable, and the Canadian dollar makes everything quite affordable. Given the exchange rate, Québec will be the perfect destination for your summer vacation.
In addition, the dates for the 2017 ASA Meetings correspond to Canada Fierté/Pride week, which will be held in Montréal at the same time that the city will celebrate its 375th anniversary and the country will celebrate the 150th anniversary of the Canadian Confederation. There will also be countless street festivals, as is always the case in Montréal during the summer. Of course, we want ASA members inside the walls of the Palais des congrès, attending sessions during the conference, but I encourage you to come early or stay a few days after the meetings (which are scheduled earlier than is typically the case).
Another reason for the sociologically curious to attend ASA 2017 is that Québec society is an amazing social laboratory, with an exceptionally strong “social economy,” universal health care, daycare available from $7 per day for the less well-off to $25 a day for the highest incomes, as well as a leading video gaming industry (this means excellent fieldtrip opportunities for teenagers). I would also mention that Montréal is the most trilingual city in the Americas, but this is enough boosterism already.
Foreign students and members without passports should start the procedures for obtaining a visa and/or a passport early. Information about travel requirements can be found at www.asanet.org/annual-meeting-2017/travel-housing. ASA staff can assist you by providing letters indicating your participation in the meeting.
One important detail to mention is that we have a special registration rate of $215 for non-ASA members attending the 2017 Annual Meeting from outside of the United States. This seems like the perfect year for our non-member Canadian (and other) colleagues to take advantage of this special rate.