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In-Person Workshops Registration Information

This year, in-person workshops will be held during the Annual Meeting, onsite, in Toronto, Canada. To learn about the individual workshop offerings, scroll down or use the navigation menu on the left.

Only in-person Annual Meeting registrants can attend in-person workshops.

To purchase Annual Meeting registration and to reserve your space at a workshop, log in or create an account in the AAA Community Hub.

To add workshops to your existing Annual Meeting registration, log in to the AAA Community Hub. Select My Registrations -> 2023 AAA/CASCA Annual Meeting: Transitions-> Edit Existing

The workshop capacities are limited. Secure your spot today!

Wednesday, November 15

Graduate Student Workshop: Drafting A Prospectus for Dissertation

12:00 PM – 2:00 PM

The aims of this workshop are twofold: (1) to offer advice to mid-stage PhD students on how to prepare and draft a prospectus; and (2) to create a space for these students to discuss their own approaches, plans, queries, and difficulties away from their home institutions. The prospectus typically receives less attention in PhD programs even though it forms the basis for students’ PhD research, grant proposals, and dissertations. We hope that the fruits of this workshop will have a ripple effect on both the quality of students’ research and on their early-career networks. As most programs require the completion of a prospectus, we expect this workshop to attract mid-stage PhD students from other disciplines, too.

We plan to divide the workshop in two halves: the first half will feature two seasoned anthropologists who give short, prepared remarks on the art of drafting a prospectus, tips for success, and pitfalls to avoid – handouts will be made available to attendees. Students will have ample opportunity to ask questions, after which these two advisors leave. In the second half, our chair will lead a semi-structured discussion during which students can raise any queries related to the prospectus. Depending on the number of attendees, we may conduct this half of the workshop in small groups, before a plenary conclusion. We will also encourage students to set up groups to foster connections after the AAA and continue helping each other with the prospectus and beyond.

Trans-Versing Storyworlds via Ethnographic Poetry and Interstitial Art

12:00 PM – 3:00 PM
Workshop registration rate: $30

Powerful ethnography is inseparable from storytelling. Both of these immersive configurations demand a certain resonance with creativity and craftsmanship—and they equally shift into prominence along the ever-evolving axis of aesthetic forms and cultural paradigms that captivate our attention as well as our desire for meaning, beauty, and truth, in the world. Embracing storytelling is a way to translate the flourishing vitality of a field site; it deepens one’s rapport with the living wonder of communal happenings that often escape simplistic expression. In this three-hour participatory workshop, beginner-to-experienced participants—whether students or practicing academics—will learn to creatively organize and replot their ethnographic data into compelling, theoretically rich storyworlds. To prepare oneself for this workshop, each participant will roughly send a 300-500-word statement of intent or a 2-to-3-page series of illustrations—(i.e., a mini-proposal)—to the facilitator(s) by email, detailing what ethnographic story or artistic piece informed by their fieldwork they wish to workshop. Please email this information at least one week prior to our meeting at the conference.

The facilitators also encourage poet-ethnographers, creative writers, visual artists, musicians, and dabblers to carefully experiment with, network, and integrate the multiple forms and mediums of storytelling available to them, and to reflect on the qualities provided by the chosen format for its intended purpose. All forms and types of ethnographic material are welcome. Emphasis will be placed on discovering how multimodal poetics, interstitial art, innovative strategies, and experimental methods can further strengthen the storytelling foundations of ethnography. In the workshop, participants will be given personalized guidance, selected readings, guided prompts, and diverse exercises to actualize and animate their ethnographic storyworlds. The session will close with a group discussion on how ethnographers can become better collaborators, artists, and storytellers. After the workshop, the facilitator(s) will connect participants to an online art hub.

PLEASE EMAIL and with your mini proposals (a statement of intent) for the workshop ASAP – preferably more than a week in advance of the workshop so that we have adequate time to review each person’s material. We can also update people in advance about the workshop’s content if you send us your email address.

Collaborating with Clinical Investigators New to Qualitative Research: Strategies for the Anthropologist

2:30 PM – 4:30 PM
Workshop registration rate: $20

The purpose of the proposed 2-hour workshop is to guide the burgeoning population of medical anthropologists working with clinician investigators in both healthcare and community-oriented settings, medical research, and schools of medicine and public health. The proliferation of clinical research announcements calling for mixed methods applications (e.g., NIH,AHRQ, PCORI) has created an enormous job market for investigators trained in qualitative methods. Medical anthropologists can take advantage of this important and timely opportunity by knowing how to: negotiate their role with MDs and other clinicians; leverage their expertise across professional settings; and drive high impact research, programs, and publications with their unique methodologies and perspectives.

In this workshop, I’ll provide participants with practical guidance in finding, initiating, and executing collaborative research relationships with clinicians, creating and maintaining rigorous anthropological standards, and negotiating shared research products. Through case studies and focus-group style discussions, participants will learn to tailor communications and methods to fit the needs of diverse clinical and medical research investigations. Several recommended tools and resources will be provided to participants and additional expertise will be offered on a consulting basis following the workshop.

Thursday, November 16

That Almost Finished Journal Article: A Writing Workshop

Part I: 11/16 – 8:00 AM – 12:00 PM
Part II: 11/17 – 8:00 AM – 12:00 PM
Workshop registration rate: $80

Designed for junior professors, post-docs, graduate students (ABD), and international scholars seeking publication in English-language journals, this 8 hour interactive advanced writing workshop (spread across two days) provides guidelines and feedback to assist social scientists in revising and submitting articles for peer review. The facilitator first discusses strategies for steady output, demystifies peer review, and explains how to structure articles that draw on data from ethnographic or other qualitative or mixed-methods research. The facilitator then leads participants through active learning exercises in which they analyze components of their drafts to check that they have a conceptual hook and clear point, signposts and transitions guiding readers through their argument, links between data and analysis, and a solid conclusion. Supplementary materials include 15 pages of handouts with checklists for manuscript preparation and model passages from published articles. Each participant should bring at least one print copy of a draft of an article that they are planning to submit to a journal; parts of their draft will be shared with a partner during the workshop exercises.

For more information, contact Dr. Jaida Samudra, an anthropologist with over two decades experience editing journal articles and scholarly books in the social sciences.

Translating Anthropological Knowledge to Practice in Health Professions Education: Strategies for Effective Teaching

8:00 AM – 10:00 AM
Workshop registration rate: $20

The workshop is designed for anthropologists engaged in health professions education who wish to develop frameworks and concrete learning strategies for more effective teaching by translating theoretical and ethnographic knowledge into clinical contexts. It will also be of interest to those from other fields engaged in teaching behavioral and social foundations to current and future health professionals. A goal is to enhance knowledge and skills of anthropology graduate students who desire work in health professions education to address challenges engaging with the culture of medicine, translating anthropological knowledge and being effective educators in medicine and the health professions. On completion of this workshop, participants will know how to: 1) identify challenges faced by anthropologists teaching in clinical and health professions; 2) align anthropological concepts with learning strategies in the health professions; 3) develop relevant learning objectives and materials for translating anthropological knowledge to practice.

Faculty content experts from diverse fields in the health professions will provide handouts and small group activities to enable participants to create teaching materials based on their own settings and learning outcomes. The workshop will be divided into two parts. First, participants will hear brief presentations by content experts. In the second part, participants will be divided into small groups led by experienced faculty to learn these techniques, to discuss their specific learning objectives and start developing their own teaching materials. Participants will have access to topic-specific materials developed by the faculty and be connected to others teaching in clinical and health professions. Registration proceeds will be donated to the SMA Health Professions Education SIG.

Collaborative Event Ethnography at Climate Conferences

10:30 AM – 12:30 PM

The purpose of the workshop is to create a network of anthropologists who are interested in collaborating and conducting ethnographic research at climate-related events, with particular focus on meetings hosted by the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). The objectives are to (1) connect anthropologists who are already (or are interested in) working within UNFCCC spaces to create new collaborations and networks; (2) Discuss methodologies for conducting ethnography in these spaces, focusing on Collaborative Event Ethnography; (3) Share information regarding the logistics of working in the UNFCCC space.

The intended audience is for all practicing anthropologists at any stage in their careers. The topic of AAA involvement in the UNFCCC is inspired by the AAA Climate Change Task Force, acknowledging the important role of anthropologists in studying climate governance, processes, and their grounded impacts, as well as the ability to inform policy decisions across scales. Supplemental materials will be created during the workshop and shared afterwards – including best methods for collaborative/event ethnography, how to navigate research within UNFCCC spaces, tips and helpful links to/about UNFCCC, and contact information of attendees. The workshop incorporates active learning by including brief reports by anthropologists who have attended UNFCCC meetings followed by a Q&A, small group discussions, and strategies for interdisciplinary research and collaborations at UNFCCC events.

NAPA Professional Development Workshop Teaching Students to Practice Anthropology

12:30 PM – 2:30 PM
Workshop registration rate: $20

This workshop is intended for higher education instructors who have litle to no experience teaching applied or practicing anthropology to learn how to approach a course and to start developing ideas. Objectives include how to conceive of and design classes or class components that teach anthropology students the skills and knowledge that they need to prepare for future employment. Participants should leave with a foundation based on the wide range of concepts, literature, technical skills and research tools used by anthropologists in varied contexts and tangible ideas for ways students can gain this knowledge and experience, including how they can parlay their anthropological skill sets into employment. Alter the event, attendees will have access, via QR code and/or email, to a packet of workshop materials, as well as course materials (syllabus, assignments, resources, etc) that I have used when teaching applied anthropology in the past.

We know that for anthropology departments to not only survive but to thrive we must train students to be practitioners in a variety of fields, not just academia. However, many academic anthropologists have little to no experience doing work in the applied realm of the discipline. On the other hand, many practitioners do not have any experience in designing or teaching a course yet have great experience in the field to share in the classroom. This workshop supports developing the professional interests of students through providing support for potential instructors. In order to do so, I have included a number of exercises for attendees to do during the presentation portion, as well as workshop time to think through syllabus and course design. I also include an open format where discussion is welcome, and attendees brainstorm off each other when posing challenges they face in course design or university environment. Finally, I believe that instructors in various interdisciplinary areas, including but not limited to, Native/First Peoples students, Gender studies, or area studies could find this workshop useful in finding approaches to developing courses that help students gain skills and learn how to market them, regardless of major.

NAPA Professional Development Workshop—Tool Share: Borrowing from the Journalist’s Toolkit

1:00 PM – 3:00 PM
Workshop registration rate: $20

Anthropology has the potential to meaningfully shape the public sphere, but this requires anthropologists to shift from researcher to reporter. Fortunately, the intersections between ethnography and journalism open up exciting possibilities. Join us for this dynamic workshop where anthropologist and podcaster Adam Gamwell and journalist and researcher Emily Kennedy will provide participants with a glimpse into the toolbox and methods of working journalists. Discover how to amplify the reach of your expertise and research by harnessing journalistic techniques.

Perfect for students and faculty alike, this workshop will empower you to connect with the public through various channels, be it traditional media (op-eds, articles, interviews) or self-published platforms (blogs, podcasts, social media). Whether you’re an anthropologist, journalist, academic communication manager, or para-ethnographer, you’re invited to join. Come prepared with a story topic for development and engage in breakout rooms where small groups will practice specific tools and receive tailored feedback. Leave the session equipped with a pitch ready for media outlets or strategically positioned for self-publishing. As a bonus, participants will receive digital handouts outlining the methods covered during the workshop, ensuring you can apply these invaluable tools repeatedly in your endeavors. Don’t miss this opportunity to revolutionize the impact of your anthropological research on society.

Grant Writing for the Wenner-Gren Foundation and the NSF

3:00 PM – 5:00 PM

Danilyn Rutherford, the president of the Wenner-Gren Foundation for Anthropological Research, and Jeff Mantz, Program Director for Cultural Anthropology at the National Science Foundation, will offer a workshop designed to help anthropologists navigate the process of getting a grant. They’ll describe the

various funding opportunities their agencies offer, say something about the review process, and offer helpful tips on how to write a winning proposal. There will be plenty of time for questions. This event will be suitable for students and seasoned scholars alike.

Proposal writing can be a daunting and even frightening task. Participants in this workshop will discover what the two major funders for anthropological research are looking for in an application. This workshop is perfect for anyone who wants to learn to describe their research in more compelling terms.

Friday, November 17

Going Up? Offering the Perfect Elevator Pitch

8:00 AM – 10:00 AM
Workshop registration rate: $20

You bump into an old acquaintance, or your former boss, and she asks you what you’re up to. Will you stutter, sputter and stammer or will you smile and deliver the perfect elevator pitch? “What’s that?” you ask. It is a brief, persuasive synopsis that you use to spark interest in you— or a career-related idea you have. A good elevator pitch should last no longer than a short elevator ride of 20 to 30 seconds, hence the name.

After a brief introduction and overview, we will break into groups, write our own pitches, and then practice them before the other attendees. Our goal is to help you communicate with confidence. You will be able to put this skill to work right away with prospective (or current) employers or anyone else you hope to influence through your work. By the end of this workshop, you will be able to:

  • Tailor your elevator pitch to your audience
  • Make your pitch interesting, memorable, and succinct
  • Communicate your unique selling proposition well
  • Relay exactly who you are, where your interests lay, and how you plan to add value.

You will also leave the workshop with some tools that will help you continue to practice your pitch. This workshop is open to students, early-career professionals, and those seeking a career reset—regardless of disciplinary background. The training is general enough that anyone intent on finding work should be able to benefit from it. See you there!

Anthropology in Implementation Science

10:30 AM – 2:30 PM
Workshop registration rate: $40

Implementation science is the scientific study and application of methods and strategies that support the uptake of new policies, programs, and interventions. This burgeoning field aims to close the gap between research and practice to effectively transition new practices from novel innovation into regular use. Anthropology has played a critical role in implementation science since the field’s inception. In this interactive workshop, we will review the “what” and “why” behind implementation science; review a sampling of implementation theories, models, and frameworks; discuss implementation strategies; and explore anthropology’s contributions to implementation science design and measurement. Throughout this workshop, we will balance a focus on how to conduct research based in implementation science with applied medical anthropology and public health practice. Case examples drawn from the real-life experience of the presenters in health, behavioral health, and educational settings will help to ground discussions so that participants will walk away with practical methods for applying implementation science in their work. Hands-on activities will focus on how we, as anthropologists, can leverage our unique skillsets and knowledge to propose and conduct methodologically rigorous approaches to assessing the fit of new practices at multiple levels of implementation, understand and plan to address the nuances of implementation environments, and undertake timely analyses to inform implementation processes. We will also focus on collaboration and co-creation in implementation science, including strategies for identifying diverse community-based implementation partners and methods for optimizing engagement. Finally, this workshop will consider how an anthropologically informed implementation science is vital to producing social science theory with high public health relevance and impact.

The intended audience for this workshop includes medical anthropologists, applied anthropologists, implementation practitioners, and others from interdisciplinary backgrounds with interests in incorporating anthropological methods into projects centered on implementing and disseminating new practices in diverse organizational, system, and community settings. The workshop will feature a combination of polling questions and small group activities. A resource list that highlights training and funding opportunities will be provided to participants.

Tools in the Satchel: On Embodiment and Research Based Devised Theatre

1:00 PM – 5:00 PM
Workshop registration rate: $40

This half-day workshop will be led and facilitated by The Anthropologists, an award-winning New York City-based theatre company. The Anthropologists creates original investigative theatre that inspires action through provocative questions, dynamic storytelling, and collaborative theater-making techniques. The purpose of this workshop is to explore theatre as a mechanism for experimentation and play, its potential intersections with research and the role of theatre as pedagogy, praxis, and a means of public engagement.

The workshop will be structured in two parts. In the first part, participants will learn about the group’s research based devising practice using case studies from The Anthropologists’ performances in order to delve into their unique methodology, examining the creative process from provocation and investigation to scripting and performance. In addition, participants will hear from The Anthropologists’ recent Anthropologist-in-Residence and reproductive justice scholar, Dr. Haile Eshe Cole, about their process for utilizing research to co-create a performance piece on Black birthwork and midwifery. The second part of the workshop invites participants to engage in a test application of The Anthropologists’ methodology. Facilitators will guide participants through a dynamic mining process that seeks to provide hands-on experience melding source material, physical theatre techniques and visual storytelling. Participants will work in small groups to use research, theatre techniques, design elements and composition work to generate material and investigate storytelling possibilities, with opportunities to create and share performance drafts. A brief discussion that explores the utility of these techniques in the field, in research, in the classroom, and beyond will follow.

This workshop is ideal for scholars both inside and outside of the field of Anthropology, students, performers, directors, writers, dramaturgs and designers. No theatre experience necessary. Participants are only asked to bring a willingness to explore, invent and engage with one another in creative movement. Self-led interpretations of assignments that are inclusive for all bodies and experience levels are welcome. The Anthropologists ensure skilled facilitators, and a safe and respectful space, with systems in place for harm prevention and reduction.

How to Write for the Public

3:00 PM – 5:00 PM

Increasingly, anthropologists are seeking ways to connect their research, discoveries, and thinking to a broad, public audience. But how? This workshop brings together experts to provide insights into the art and craft of public engagement. Chip Colwell, editor-in-chief of Sapiens and Jeff Martin, the AAA’s Director of Communications and Public Affairs, will explain the importance of storytelling and how to write for the public. Workshop participants will learn how to master storytelling techniques that speak to the heart as well as the head, and position yourself as a trusted resource, both with the media and in communities. Participants will also learn how to write for SAPIENS and other public outlets, as you will learn how to build a framework to approach popular writing and an understanding of the publication process. We will close the workshop with a practice “pitch” session, where you get to try out turning your research into a clear, compelling story that will resonate with a general audience. Public engagement is a craft that must be cultivated, so please come join us to sharpen your skills and learn about how you can engage a broad public audience to make your research matter.

Saturday, November 18

NAPA Professional Development Workshop: Storytelling Skill-Building from Novice to Pro for Anthropological Communication

8:00 AM – 12:00 PM
Workshop registration fee: $40

Join us for an engaging skill-building workshop on storytelling for anthropological communication. Discover practical techniques to transform complex concepts into compelling narratives that resonate with diverse audiences. Explore successful storytelling techniques and strategies and learn how to translate complex learning into accessible, effective communication. Plus, gain insights on engaging with journalism and mainstream media outlets. Open to aspiring and experienced anthropologists at all career stages interested in effective communication. Let’s amplify the impact of anthropology through the power of storytelling!

NAPA Professional Development Workshop—Facilitating Creativity: Skills and Tools of Workshop Facilitation

8:00 AM – 10:00 AM
Workshop registration fee: $20

The aim of this dynamic workshop is to equip attendees with facilitation techniques that inspire creativity in both groups and individuals. Participants will be educated in utilizing the creative process to guide groups towards innovative idea generation and proactive problem-solving. Proficiencies in creative thinking and facilitation are not only valuable, but also widely applicable in various professional fields beyond anthropology. Specifically, within the realm of anthropology, these skills can be employed to collaborate with communities and clients, enabling a better understanding of issues at hand, stimulating creative data utilization, and designing effective interventions.

The session will commence with an overview of creativity research, setting a theoretical foundation. Following this, we will delve into the fundamentals of steering interactive workshops designed to ignite creative thinking. These workshops will empower groups to identify and effectively address issues or areas of interest. We will provide a range of tools, as well as textual and web-based resources, to kick-start participants’ creative thinking toolkit.

Indigenous Land Acknowledgments and the Unsettled Settler

12:00 PM – 1:30 PM

Many governments and Institutions across Canada do land acknowledgements before meetings, convocations, seminars, and conferences, but why do we do them? What is their purpose? And are they an effective tool to further reconciliation between Settler Canadians and Indigenous Peoples? For many the problem seems to be that Indigenous Land Acknowledgments have become so ubiquitous that they risk becoming rote or performative – devoid of meaning; but is that really the problem?

Canada has never had an “Indian Problem” – but it does have a Settler problem. Settler Canadians have been shielded from violence perpetrated by the Settler state against Indigenous peoples. A properly crafted Indigenous Land Acknowledgment presents the opportunity to open the curtain a crack, however, in doing so, settlers must be prepared to be unsettled. In this workshop, which is intended for students, faculty, and non-anthropologists alike, participants will have an opportunity to think about and discuss how to make a meaningful and properly crafted land acknowledgment.

NAPA Professional Development Workshop—Before, During and After: Strategies for Communicating with Collaborators and Critics

1:00 PM – 5:00 PM
Workshop registration fee: $40

Join NAPA members Melissa Cefkin and Suanna Selby Crowley for an in-depth participatory workshop on communicating with clients, collaborators and critics. In this two-part workshop, Part 1 will consider where and how anthropologists present their qualifications for work (e.g., job interview or a project proposal), report on work (e.g., research proposal or project results), and ways to mobilize others to take action (e.g., codesign activities, influencing clients or leadership). Part 2 will focus on developing strategic approaches to generating visibility for projects and research results with special emphasis on the realities of communications crises and how to manage negative attention. This workshop is designed to be a discussion of how to shape approaches to internal and external communications.

This session is sponsored by NAPA.

Connecting Ethnographic Methods, Culture, and Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) Work in Organizations

2:00 PM – 6:00 PM
Workshop registration fee: $40

As conducting cultural assessments has become a critical aspect of organizations’ diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) strategies, understanding organizational culture is increasingly an important component of DEI work. In this environment, competing understandings of what culture is and how it operates, both within and outside of the organization, can critically impact the success of DEI efforts.

During this session, students and potential jobseekers will be provided with illustrative case studies and led through hands-on activities that seek to hone their ability to apply ethnographic theory and qualitative methods to cultural assessment and DEI work in organizations. Specifically, small group exercises are designed to teach attendees how to articulate the differences between diversity, equity, and inclusion in-practice, to ethnographically assess organizational values, and to apply a DEI lens to the remaking and institutionalization of these newly created values within an organization. Attendees will leave the workshop with a better understanding of how ethnographic and qualitative research can contribute to the development of impactful DEI strategies and outcomes.

Register for Annual Meeting workshops today!