The American Sociological Association (ASA) is concerned about the well-being of sociologists around the world as the COVID19 pandemic changes the course of daily life in fundamental ways. We recognize that the nature of the challenges facing individual sociologists varies not only by personal conditions, but by the conditions of the country in which one resides. We support sociologists around the world as they make efforts to address this crisis through sociological research, and we express solidarity with our global sociological family interested in the well-being of humanity.
ASA recently reaffirmed its commitment to scholarly freedom by “express[ing] concern about sociologists around the world who continue to face governmental restrictions on their scholarly activity.” In the context of our current global crisis, we expand our call to governments to provide robust financial resources for education as well as public policy platforms that prioritize teaching and learning.
It is at times like this when the critical role of the educational enterprise in ensuring the public good is brought to light. Sociological scholarship in particular is fundamentally important for understanding and addressing the societal and economic transformations that are occurring due to the virus. Sociology helped address the enormous transformations of the Industrial Revolution, and continued investment into the full range of humanistic and scientific disciplines, irrespective of political borders, will help us move productively through this period of enormous dislocation across the globe. This pandemic calls for a global solution. We urge ongoing critical self-reflexivity on the consequences of sanctions, institutional budget cuts, and other policy decisions that might impact knowledge production.