February 01, 2017 -- President Glen MacDonald and the governing Council of the American Association of Geographers (AAG) today issued the following statement:
We are deeply concerned by the recent executive order that restricts the ability of AAG members and the broader geography community from certain countries from being able to enter or return to the United States.
This executive order is contrary to the values we hold dear in geography, which is an inherently open and international discipline. Diversity and international interactions in the field of geography are essential to addressing global issues including security, peace, economic well-being, and health, as well as to achieving global understanding of our world and understanding in our world.
The AAG community, like universities and other associations across the United States, has long been deeply enriched by researchers, scholars, and students from around the world, including the affected countries, coming to study, teach, share knowledge, and learn. It is critical that the United States continues to welcome geographers and others of all backgrounds and nationalities. This is not only just and ethical, but our nation’s ability to remain a global leader in innovation, science, research, and education depends on it.
The AAG welcomes all of our members and the international scientific community to participate in our association’s activities, including at our Annual Meetings which provide the world’s largest forum for international exchange of scholarship, research, and applications in geography, to over 9,000 attendees annually. This year an extraordinary special session will discuss the challenges we now face and draw upon the insight and help of our membership.
We are committed to supporting all AAG members who are impacted by this executive action. The Council and Executive Director are actively working with determination in this effort and will provide regular updates.