Hold the AAG Annual Meeting in Less Expensive Cities to Broaden Participation
This petition had 110 supporters
The costs associated with attending the Annual Meeting of the Association of American Geographers (AAG) have gotten way out of hand, especially given the precarious fiscal situation of public higher education and government service administrations, employees of which make up the majority of AAG members and attendees.
By routinely holding the conference in expensive "destination" cities (San Francisco, Chicago, Los Angeles, Boston, New York, Washington, Seattle), the planners of the Annual Meeting are, in practice, facilitating a growing divide between the "haves" and "have nots" in our discipline. Those without the means to attend the meeting in these pricey locations face tremendous opportunity cost, losing the networking, professional development, and enrichment necessary for upward mobility in their careers.
Therefore, this petition requests that the leadership of the AAG consider other, lower-cost locations to host the annual meeting on a regular basis. In addition to providing access to the organization's flagship conference to scholars and practitioners with diverse perspectives who otherwise lack the means for attendance, the organization itself will benefit from holding the meeting in other cities by simply not being an anonymous, otherwise ignored event in these larger metropolitan areas.
Less expensive cities worthy of further consideration or reconsideration include, but are by no means limited to: Albuquerque, Atlanta, Baltimore, Buffalo, Charlotte, Cleveland, Dallas-Fort Worth, Denver, Houston, Indianapolis, Jacksonville, Kansas City, Madison, Milwaukee, Minneapolis-St. Paul, Nashville, Oklahoma City, Orlando, Phoenix, Pittsburgh, Rochester, Salt Lake City, St. Louis, Tampa and Winnipeg.
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