Advocacy

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The Consortium of Social Science Associations (COSSA) is an advocacy organization working to secure sustainable federal funding for social and behavioral science research and support federal policies that positively impact the conduct of research.  Through our advocacy and outreach efforts, COSSA seeks to:

  • Promote and protect social and behavioral science programs administered by agencies across the federal government and across social and behavioral science disciplines.
  • Increase the visibility and utilization of the social and behavioral sciences by policymakers in Congress and at federal agencies.
  • Inform members, stakeholders, and the broader social and behavioral science community of federal actions impacting the research community, positively or negatively.
  • Mobilize members to take grassroots action when needed.

COSSA monitors the full range of federal issues impacting the social and behavioral science community as a whole, from funding to new research policies and directives.

COSSA advocates during the appropriations process for sustained federal support for social and behavioral science research across the federal agencies. We also advocate for authorizing and other legislation that reflects the importance of these sciences. Within the federal agencies and administration, COSSA weighs in on regulatory and policy issues by submitting comments to and otherwise engaging with agency officials to promote our science.

We strive to both proactively educate the government and the public about the value of social and behavioral science research and to defend these sciences against baseless attacks and criticism.

For matters of particular significance to the COSSA community, we issue action alerts to urge our advocates to write to their Members of Congress. We also keep our members informed about emerging issues so they may take action at any time.

COSSA’s Advocacy and Outreach Partners

We believe that our message will go further if it comes from many voices. We work closely with the broad community of organizations and individuals who care deeply about the future of the social and behavioral sciences. First and most important are our members, who provide us with expertise and direction on the issues facing their individual disciplines and organizations.

We also work as part of numerous coalitions that advocate for specific issues or federal agencies ranging from agriculture statistics to the National Science Foundation. COSSA helps to lead three coalitions—the Coalition to Promote Research (CPR), the Friends of NIH Behavioral and Social Sciences Research (Friends of NIH-BSSR), and the Collaborative to Enhance Diversity in Science (CEDS)—and is a member of many others.

COSSA collaborates with other organizations, like the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the Association of American Universities, the Association of Public and Land-grant Universities, and the Council of Professional Associations on Federal Statistics, to address issues that affect the science community as a whole.

Lastly, we work directly with the federal agencies and Congressional colleagues that support social and behavioral science research.