Social Sciences Symposium Series

The Social Sciences Symposium Series

About the Social Sciences Symposium Series

The purpose of the Social Sciences Symposium Series is to host conferences/workshops and bring scholars from a variety of disciplines to our campus to discuss future directions in social sciences, as a form of knowledge production and as it is institutionalized in the university.

We encourage discussion on the changing role of the university in society; how this relates to the way we teach students, and how we relate with surrounding communities. We seek to promote critical and interdisciplinary discussion of the practice of social sciences.

The series is organized by a faculty committee with current participation from the departments of Anthropology, Geography and Environmental Studies, Political Science, Economics, Sociology, and Women’s & Ethnic Studies (WEST). The Social Sciences Symposium Series Committee was formed in 1994 by Ruben Martínez. Tre Wentling (WEST) serves as the current chair.

Current Members
Past Chair

Significant Speakers

Since its beginnings, the Social Sciences Symposium Series' guest speakers have enriched the intellectual environment at CU Colorado Springs in many ways and stimulated new approaches to research and teaching. Below is a list of those speakers and their topics.

Select Past Speakers
  • Selected Past Speakers: 2024
    Faculty Voices  "Palestine /Israel Teach-In: Histories, Rights, Global Perspectives"
    Kaylani Hocog ManglonaAnthropologyUniversity of Pennsylvania“Hagan – Haga’: Language, Lifeblood, & Legacy of the CHamoRu Tribe”
    Casey James MillerAnthropologyMuhlenberg College“Inside the Circle”
    Jonathan SawmillerSpace LawU.S. Space Command"The Evolution in International Space Law"
    Chantal FigueroaSociologyColorado College“Picturing Mental Health: Insights from the Americas”
    Doug HertzlerSenior Policy AnalystAction Aid USA“Does Your TIAA Retirement Plan Include Land Grabs & Fossil Fuels”


  • Selected Past Speakers: 2023
    Liat Ben MosheSociology University of Illinois at Chicago“(Re)Imagining Communities of Resistance”
    Faculty & Community Voices  “Palestine/Israel Teach-In: Contexts, Voices, Affects”
  • Selected Past Speakers: 2021
    Jason Oliver ChangPolitical ScienceUniversity of Connecticut“From Orientalism to Yellow Peril: A History of Asians in the U.S.”
  • Selected Past Speakers: 2020
    Michael MungerPolitical ScienceDuke University“Is Capitalism Sustainable?”
    Terry MoePolitical ScienceStanford University“Exposing the Second Face of Power”
    Bek OrrSociologySUNY Brockport“Ethnographic Methods in the Queer Archive”
    Rebecca HansonSociologyUniversity of Florida“Harassed: Gendered Bodies and Field Research”
  • Selected Past Speakers: 2019
    Agustin FuentesAnthropologyNotre Dame University“What is Race, What it’s not, and Why it Matters”
    Audrey HorningAnthropologyWilliam & Mary / Queen’s University Belfast“Confronting Pasts in the Present: Archaeology, colonial legacies, and building better futures”
    Amy McDowellSociologyUniversity of Mississippi“‘We’re Drawing a Line’: How Ordinary Evangelicals Promote Religious Liberty at Church”


  • Selected Past Speakers: 2018
    Stanley ThangarajAnthropology / Ethnic StudiesCity College of New York"Sporting Culture between ‘Model Minority’ and ‘Terrorist’”
    Mark KoyamaEconomicsGeorge Mason University“Persecution & Toleration: The Long Road to Religious Freedom”
    Klint JanulisAnthropologyOxford“Minds as Materials: What can the intersection of the Environmental Sciences, Anthropology, and Archaeology tell us about Human social structures and cognition in prehistory?”
  • Selected Past Speakers: 2017
    Jennifer LawlessPolitical ScienceAmerican University“Why Don’t Women Run for Office and What Happens When They Do?”
  • Selected Past Speakers: 2015
    Marjorie ZatzSociologyUniversity of California – Merced“Dreams and Nightmares: Immigration Policy, Youth and Families”
    Wenda TrevathanAnthropologyNew Mexico State University“Ancient Bodies, Modern Lives”
  • Selected Past Speakers: 2014
    Steve ChanPolitical ScienceUniversity of Colorado- Boulder“Looking for Balance: China, the United States and Power Balancing in East Asia”
    Shari DworkinSociologyUniversity of California- San Francisco“Men at Risk: Gender Relations and HIV Prevention”
    Barbara RothmanSociologyBaruch College, City University of New York“Weaving a Family: Untangling Race and Adoption”
  • Selected Past Speakers: 2013
    Myron GutmannGeographyNSF/University of Michigan“Greenhouse Gas Production and the Web of Population in the U.S. Great Plains”
  • Selected Past Speakers: 2012
    Sidney MilkisPolitical ScienceUniversity of Virginia“What Happened to Post-Partisanship? Barack Obama and the New American Party System”
    John KedrowsiiGESCentral Washington University“Sleeping on the Summit: From Colorado to Mount Everest”
    Allison HopkinsGES / AnthropologyUniversity of Arizona“Traditional Medicine and the Transmission of Knowledge in Mexico and the Southwestern United States”
  • Selected Past Speakers: 2011
    Ben CarringtonSociologyUniversity of Texas at Austin“Fear of a Black Athlete: White Sporting Mythologies in the Age of Obama”
    Donovan KennedyNGO Activist / Human RightsYobel Market - Colorado Springs“Awareness is a fad! It’s all about action these days.”
  • Selected Past Speakers: 2010
    Margaret RandallIndependent Artist / WriterPoet, Photographer, Activist“To Change the World: My Years in Cuba”
    Andrea SmithMedia & Cultural StudiesUniversity of California -Riverside“Women of Color and State Violence”
  • Selected Past Speakers: 2009
    Sam QuinonesMigration Studies /Human RightsLA Times Reporter and Bestselling Author“True Tales of Mexican Migration”
    Ronald B. MitchellPolitical ScienceUniversity of Oregon“Global Environmental Problems and Politics: Musings of a Pessimistic Optimist”
  • Selected Past Speakers: 2008
    Mark Hanis ExecutiveHuman RightsDirector of the Genocide Intervention Network“Student Activism Symposium -- Beyond Bake Sales: How You Can Make A Difference that Lasts”
    Michael PoffenbergerHuman RightsExecutive Director of Resolve Uganda“Student Activism Symposium -- Beyond Bake Sales: How You Can Make A Difference that Lasts”
  • Selected Past Speakers: 2007
    Shep MelnickPolitical ScienceBoston College“Law or Politics: Does the Supreme Court Follow the Election Returns?”
    Nathan MorrowGeographyUnited Nations World Food Program“Evidence and Emergency: How Improvements in Information Systems are Showing Us Just How Little We Understand about International Humanitarian Intervention”
  • Selected Past Speakers: 2006
    V. Spike PetersonPolitical ScienceUniversity of Arizona"From Children and Casseroles to Commodities and Credit: Rethinking the Global Political Economy"
    Michael BlakelyAnthropology and American StudiesCollege of William and Mary“New York's African Burial Ground: Bioarchaeology for the 21st Century”
    Cynthia EnloeInternational Relations StudiesClark University“Gender, Militarization and Security at the Dawn of the the 21st Century”
  • Selected Past Speakers: 2005
    Thomas ShapiroSociologyBrandeis University"The Cost of Being Black in America: How Wealth Matters and What Can Be Done About It"
    Mark MooreCriminal Justice Policy and ManagementHarvard University“Creating Public Value through Public Universities: Challenges of Governance, Purpose, Leadership, and Management”
  • Selected Past Speakers: 2004
    Bernard AmadeiProfessor of Civil EngineeringCU-Boulder“Engineering with Soul: Sustainability Engineering and International Development”
    Hillary MiziaSustainability Outreach CoordinatorNew Belgium Brewery“Brewing Sustainability: The Business Case for Sustainability”
    Thoric CederstromSustainabilityCounterpoint International“Malnutrition at the Margin: The Political Ecology of Global Hunger and Sustainability of International Food Aid”
  • Selected Past Speakers: 2002-2003
    David SchlosbergPolitical ScienceNorthern Arizona University“Nature, Justice, and Culture: Environmental Justice in an Era of Globalization”
    Julian AgyemanUrban and Environmental Policy and PlanningTufts University“Just Sustainabilities: Race, Class, and Urban Sustainability”
  • Selected Past Speakers: 2001-2002
    Sallie MarstonGeographyUniversity of Arizona“Citizens and the State: Contextualizing Citizenship Formation in Space and Time”
    Paul QuirkPolitical ScienceUniversity of Illinois“Can the Public Make Good Policy Choices: The Rational Public Revisited”
    Michael KimmelSociologySUNY Stoneybrookco-sponsored a lecture on masculinity in America
  • Selected Past Speakers: 2000-2001
    Simon GlynnPhilosophyFlorida Atlantic University“Reductive Explanation Versus Interpretive Understanding Human and Social Sciences”
    Kevin McHughGeographyArizona State University“Will to Power: Retiree-Latino Conflict in Fragmented Phoenix”
    Don MichellGeographySyracuse University“Putting Social Theory to Work: The People’s Geography Project and the Popularization of Radical Geography”
  • Selected Past Speakers: 1999-2000
    • Community Research Luncheon for faculty at UCCS
      • shared research, ideas, and strategies about community-oriented research to facilitate cooperation among faculty
    • “Sustainable Colorado Springs” community conference
      • speakers from the Community Action Network, Center for Colorado Policy Studies, Citizen’s Project, Clean Air Campaign, The Voter’s Network, and Dept. of Sociology
  • Selected Past Speakers: Pre-1999
    Ronald EllerHistoryUniversity of Kentucky
    David NobleSociologyYork University
    Joni SeagerGeographyUniversity of Vermont
    Jim HightowerSocial CommentatorDallas, Texas
    Mary RomeroSociologistArizona State University
    Vandana ShivaPhysicist/Environmental ActivistArizona State University
    Jim BlautGeographerUniversity of Illinois
    Jacek KuglerPolitical ScientistVanderbilt University
    Jorge Klor de AlvaSociologistUC Berkeley
    Evelyn Hu de HartAnthropologistCU Boulder
    Michael OmiSociologistUC Berkeley
    Sandra HardingPhilosopherUniversity of Delaware
    Devon PeñaSociologistColorado College
    Dorothy SmithSociologistUniversity of Toronto
    Janice NewsonSociologistYork University
    Stanley AronowitzSociologistCUNY
    Larry BrownGeographerOhio State University