Crossing Borders
2015 Annual Meeting
Millennium Broadway Hotel
New York, New York
February 26-March 1, 2015


The online abstract submission system for the ESS annual meeting is now open at or through the website at The ESS welcomes submissions, drawing on every methodology, addressing any and all issues of interest to sociologists.  In addition, the 2015 meeting will have a special focus on “Crossing Borders.”

The “Crossing Borders” theme invites discussion of the social construction and social impacts of borders dividing individuals, groups, and nations.  It challenges us to explore how borders are created, how they can change, and the complex processes shaping whether, and how, they can be crossed – and with what consequences.

One type of border is political. Millions of people have crossed international borders in the past half century to come to the United States in one of the massive population movements of our time.  How has this enormous inflow shaped the lives of the migrants who have crossed borders — and transformed social, economic, political, and cultural institutions and patterns in American society?   What can recent research tell us, for example, about the pathways and barriers to immigrant inclusion in American society?  How has the presence of new immigrants changed America’s racial order, injected new dynamics into politics, and altered community institutions and neighborhoods?   How extensive and significant are migrants’ cross-border ties with their home societies?  What, for immigrants and for American society, are the ramifications of large numbers of undocumented residents? Other questions emerge when we put the U.S. in a wider context and look through a comparative lens. What, for instance, are the causes and consequences of border crossing in different immigrant receiving societies, including north of the U.S. border and across the Atlantic?

There are many other important borders that reflect significant social divisions, raising questions about their nature, social effects, and degree of permeability. There are borders based on class, ethnicity, race, gender, religion, and age, for example, and borders dividing those involved in institutions and organizations from those who are not. The theme can also focus attention on the value of crossing interdisciplinary borders, not only as a way to highlight distinctive sociological approaches to theoretical and empirical questions but also to reflect on what we can learn from other disciplines.