Nikos Zahariadis, President, ISA-South & Kirsten Taylor, Vice President and Program Chair posted on May 26, 2020 11:44
We regretfully inform you that the Atlanta 2020 ISA-South meeting will NOT be held this year. It was a very difficult decision that we had to make. After thorough consultation with the Executive Council, the Pedagogy conference which was co-hosting the meeting, other organizations holding meetings at around the same time, and colleagues from several parts of the country, we decided that for safety reasons we needed to postpone the conference until 2021. There is simply too much uncertainty about what will happen with the COVID-19 pandemic. We are also painfully aware, as you are, of the financial exigencies plaguing our institutions at this moment, including the possibility of reduced, if any, travel budgets.
For these reasons and with your safety and the best interest of ISA-South in mind, we decided it would not be prudent to hold the conference in 2020. Instead, we decided to postpone it until October 2021. So, barring the unexpected and after consulting with the relevant program chairs, we plan on hosting Atlanta 2021 and St. Augustine 2022.
We also entertained the thought of holding a virtual conference in its place, as some organizations have opted to do. We looked at various options, attended some virtual panels, and sought the Executive Council’s and ISA hq’s opinion. It was decided the value added was not high enough relative to the additional effort required. We opted NOT to have a virtual conference either.
This was very difficult for me personally. ISA-South was my first academic conference as a graduate student. I have been attending it almost every year since 1986. As fate would have it, I had to be the one at the helm making the decision to postpone it for the first time ever (at least that I can remember). I look forward to our annual get together, knowing it is rigorous and relaxed, academically challenging and professionally very collegial, intellectually stimulating and personally friendly. It is what we academics call, a good time. We cannot hold it this year, but we promise, barring the unexpected, it will be even better next year.
The Executive Council also voted to extend the current leadership team’s tenure for another year. In light of the unusual circumstances and the logistical and other issues the annual meeting’s postponement has raised, it was decided that Kirsten and I should continue in our posts through 2021. We appreciate and are humbled by the support. We accept and will continue doing our best to move ISA-South forward.
We ask for your understanding and hope to see you in Atlanta in 2021. The call for papers will arrive in your emailbox next May. Our thoughts are with you in these trying times.
Stay safe and stay healthy. Remember, this, too, shall pass.
Nikos Zahariadis, President, ISA-South
Kirsten Taylor, Vice President and Program Chair