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ERIC Number: ED478272
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2003
Pages: 16
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
Statement of the American Sociological Association on the Importance of Collecting Data and Doing Social Scientific Research on Race.
American Sociological Association, Washington, DC.
This statement describes the basis for the American Sociological Association's (ASA) position regarding scientific research on race, illustrating the importance of such data to further scientific investigation and inform public policy. Race is a complex, sensitive, and controversial topic in scientific discourse and public policy. The controversy addresses such issues as causes and consequences of racial inequality, whether or not to continue using racial classification to assess the role and consequences of race, and conditions under which racial classification promotes racial division. Some scholarly and civic leaders have proposed that the government stop collecting data on race, asserting that the concept of race has no validity in their fields. However, significant social science research documents the role of race in primary social institutions and environments (criminal justice, education, health, job markets, and neighborhoods). Research illustrates how racial hierarchies are embedded in daily life. Growth among some racial and ethnic groups and diversification of the nation's racial and ethnic composition underscore the need for expanded research on these groups' health and socioeconomic status. Sociologists have long examined how race is used to place people in categories. The ASA asserts that measuring differential experiences, treatment, and outcomes across racial categories is necessary to track disparities and inform policymakers to achieve greater social justice. (Contains 44 references.) (SM)
American Sociological Association, 1307 New York Avenue, N.W., Suite 700, Washington, DC 20005-4701. Tel: 202-383-9005; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: American Sociological Association, Washington, DC.