News for Wednesday, February 8, 2017
Reaffirming SAR’s Global Commitment to Scholars and Artists
February 7, 2017 - A recent executive order from the White House has temporarily closed the United States to foreign nationals from seven countries. The document also orders US embassy and consular officials to impose more stringent background checks before allowing foreign nationals to secure nonimmigrant visas that would permit them entry into the United States.
To our knowledge, this executive order has not directly affected any SAR scholars, but we fear that it will cast a shadow over our ability to fulfill SAR’s mission, which is to facilitate exchanges among scholars representing the broadest possible range of perspectives and nationalities, thereby helping to enrich our communities and our understanding of human societies across the globe.
We concur with a recent statement by the American Ethnological Society, which has noted that this ban will not only affect the work of scholars and students undertaking research abroad; it “also damages prospects for evidence-based policymaking rooted in first-hand, indepth understanding of the rest of the world.” Since SAR’s founding in 1907, evidence-based research and global perspectives have lain at the heart of our mission.
We remain committed to the scholars and artists—from the United States and many other nations—whom the School for Advanced Research supports in their search for a better understanding of what it means to be human.
Michael F. Brown, PhD