The Rural Sociological Society (RSS)

The RSS is a professional social science association that promotes the generation, application, and dissemination of sociological knowledge. The Society seeks to enhance the quality of rural life, communities, and the environment. This website is intended to serve all those interested in rural people and places.

We seek and support a diverse and international membership of academics and practitioners who share our interests in rural people and places.

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What We Do

The core activities of the Rural Sociological Society are our peer-reviewed journal, Rural Sociology, our annual conference, and support for communities of scholars concerned with specific rural topics. Through these activities, the RSS has provided leadership in scholarship, policies, and advocacy. Since its founding in 1937, the RSS has traced changes in rural life and livelihoods, demography, community structures and economies, technologies, environmental conditions, and agriculture and food systems.


What are Research and Interest Groups? Research and Interest Groups (RIGs) reflect the substantive interests of RSS Members and serve as an important avenue for connecting members with similar interests.  RIGs serve a critical role in RSS including: identifying, developing, and recruiting for the annual RSS conference; planning special events, speakers, field trips for the annual conference; providing intellectual leadership in their respective areas; rewarding achievement through internal awards and recognitions; and creating opportunities for members, particularly graduate students, to network and identify colleagues with similar interests.

RSS Leadership

The Council members of RSS are elected each year by the members by a majority vote or appointed by the President. The Council includes the President, Vice President, Secretary, Executive Director and Treasurer, President-Elect, Past President, and the chair of each committee. 

There are seven standing committees of the Society: Awards, Development, Diversity, Membership, Nominations, Program, and Publications. Each Committee has about six members, including one graduate student representative. These members are appointed by the President. These leaders serve in their positions for 1-3 years, or more if called for. Their leadership begins or ends at each Annual Meeting. All leadership positions are voluntary and do not receive salary or payment, except for the Executive Director and Business Office personnel.

Current Officers

Current RSS Council

RSS Standing Committee

Past Presidents