About this series
Each year at Penn State University, the College of the Liberal Arts, the College of Health and Human Development, and the Population Research Institute hold a two-day symposium focused on a key problem facing families. The symposium, now known as the National Symposium on Family Issues, brings together 200 scholars and policy experts with the following aims:
- promote interdisciplinary dialogue and to stimulate research on family issues
- promote scholarly excellence by inviting leaders in the field to present
- identify promising issues in the field of family studies that are not receiving sufficient attention from researchers and which would not ordinarily be covered by professional societies, foundations, or government agencies
Sixteen of the top scholars in the field of family research convene to present and critique research on the focal topic and to consider their implications for effective programs and public policy. The event brings scholars into contact with other distinguished researchers in such diverse fields as family studies, child development, sociology, psychology, education, economics, anthropology, law, and history. The symposium co-organizers, Alan Booth and Susan McHale, make an effort to include international scholars.
Books based on each symposium bring the event to an even wider audience. Past volumes have received favorable reviews and are used as reference works by faculty, students and practitioners. In sum, the National Symposium on Families is a landmark event each year in the ongoing study of families, reaching a wide audience and affecting the national conversation on this very important topic.