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The High Plains Society
Applied Anthropology


News about the High Plains Society, information on upcoming events and reports on past events. To send an item for possible posting on this website, please email andrea.akers.mader@gmail.com.
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  • Friday, February 01, 2019 8:54 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)


    Looking for an opportunity to practice hands-on ethnographic

    methods and gain applied experience and skills?

    Sweet Grass Consulting LLC is a team of researchers and community development advocates who provide professional, evaluative and research services that promote and support asset-based development initiatives in economically burdened communities. Sweet Grass Consulting has experience in areas related to strategic action planning and assessment, effective data collection and database development, feasibility and market analyses, impact measurement programs and comprehensive reporting in a variety of mediums. Similarly, SGC implements participatory methods with a focus in Community Development processes and utilizes these methods to achieve community defined goals.

    Pyatt Studio is a mission driven firm with a core purpose of improving the quality of peoples lives through design. Pyatt Studio un-derstands that a building is an opportunity to inspire change and enhance the human condition. Their work seeks to leverage these opportunities for the greater public good by looking for ways to promote social, economic and environmental sustainability in their projects. Values such as: a focus on people and place, social impact, participation of all stakeholders, and a willingness to question the status quo inform their approach to each project. The Building Cooperative is a non profit organization established by Pyatt Stu-dio to expand on the firms educational and affordable housing programs.

    The collaboration between Sweet Grass Consulting and Pyatt Studio was developed through shared values and understanding of the role ethnogra-phy plays in design and community development. Much of Sweet Grass’ community development work has been related to affordable housing initi-atives and needs assessments. Additionally, Pyatt Studio believes it is imper-ative to incorporate cultural traditions and community engagement into ar-chitecture and design. Integrating the strengths of anthropological field methods and design, this field school aims to provide a multidisciplinary ap-proach to community development and sustainable affordable housing. This field school will provide housing for the underserved Native American community while providing on-site learning collaborations. By using educa-tion and hands-on experiences as a catalyst for change, Sweet Grass and Py-att Studio seek to empower a new generation of community designers, an-thropologists, builders and thinkers for the future.

    The field school will take place on the Pine Ridge Reservation in South Dakota for 4-5 weeks over the course of this summer. The 4-5 weeks on-site may not be consecutive. If you have scheduling concerns or other concerns, please contact us, we can work out an individual plan to meet your needs. Interns will be responsible for 40-60 hours of work a week. You will experience a mix of structured learning experiences, skill-building shadowing, community engagement, and adventures! The cost of the field school is $3,000. Applying for the field school automatically applies you for one of two $500 scholarships. One $500 scholarship will go to an emerging anthropologist and one will go to an emerging designer.

    You will not regret the experiences and growth you will encounter while visiting the rich environment and working with vibrant peo-ple throughout the area!

    Download Sweetgrass's Logistic Form Here.



    DUE APRIL 12, 2019

  • Tuesday, May 10, 2016 2:51 PM | Anonymous

    Please visit this page to read Volume 35, Number 2 of The Applied Anthropologist Journal!

  • Saturday, December 05, 2015 1:35 PM | Anonymous

    If you are a student HPSfAA is offering a travel award. 

    Apply to receive the award here: 


  • Saturday, December 05, 2015 1:34 PM | Anonymous

    High Plains 2016 Spring Conference

    Call for Abstracts

    April 20-24, 2016

    Metropolitan State University Campus, Denver, Colorado

    Conference Theme: Unmaking and Making an Unjust World—

    Representations and Critiques of Social Justice

    Social protest and subversion are at the foundation of Anthropology and the communities who offer subject matter for the discipline.  Both academia and community have found many ways to artistically present social movements, resistance, and protest to hegemonic structures of inequality at both individual and community levels. This consists of, but is not limited to: television, radio, internet, music, poetry, literature, theatre, space-occupation, and body-political approaches. What is more, human injustices are broad in spectrum, from culture to sexuality, and from social class to the environment; the challenges are myriad and global. In an attempt to look critically at how social justice is defined and enacted, we invite abstracts for presentation of formal papers dealing with representations of social justice via social mediums such as: television, radio, internet, music, poetry, literature, theatre, space-occupation, and body-political performances. We welcome individual, group, community, academic, government and policy-based demonstrations, presentations, performances and workshops.

    Deadline for Submission of Abstract or Presentation Proposals: February 1, 2016 via this survey link: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/2016_HPSfAA_Abstract_Submission

  • Friday, December 02, 2011 9:47 AM | Anonymous

    Greetings everyone and Happy Holidays. This is the first of which is intended to be a bi-monthly update. Its primary function is to communicate to all the members of our society information on upcoming events, activities and important issues in which we are involved.

    To begin, the Annual Ghost Ranch Retreat was very successful. The comment from some attendees was that it was “the best one ever.” This was true in several ways. The papers, panels and roundtable discussions were timely, vibrant and well received. Also, student attendance and participation was our largest group ever. Students from Metropolitan State College, the University of Arizona, Colorado State University, and the University of Colorado at Denver all participated. Clearly, a productive and good time was had by all.

    The important upcoming events should be particularly noted. First, the Annual Spring Conference (April 19th to the 22nd) will be held on the Colorado State University campus this year. The conference will be held in conjunction with the Northern Colorado Intertribal “Pow Wow” Association (NCIPA) which will offer a number of exciting activities for conference participants. The conference theme this year, “Artistic Expressions and Community Connection,” is a departure from those of the past few years, but represents an important and exciting avenue for participants to explore.

    Another important recent development has been the request from the Society for Applied Anthropology to jointly sponsor the 2013 National Conference in Denver. Although there are many details to work out, this clearly shows the respect for our regional group at the national level and, I think, promises to have several positive long term benefits to our organization. Mr. Tom May, Executive Director for SFAA has visited with some of the board members once already and is scheduled to return to Denver in the next month or so to begin work on selecting the conference theme, arranging tours and special events, etc. I should have much more in the way of details to share with you in my next communication.

    For now, let me wish you all the very best and happiest of holidays.

    Jack Schultz, HPSfAA President

  • Wednesday, November 09, 2011 9:22 AM | Anonymous

    Call for Papers
    If you or your community, students, agencies, coalitions, organizations, teams, or colleagues have a story to tell, idea to explore, paper to present, poster to exhibit, research to expand our knowledge or experiences to share, please join us!   Please see the conference description below for more information. We encourage you to submit your abstracts and panels.  

    Please follow this link (https://hpsfaa.wufoo.com/forms/paper-submission/) to fill out the form for a paper, panel, or open forum topic, including an abstract of no more than 250 words. 

    *You must be registered for the conference in order to submit a paper, panel or forum topic* 

    You may also download the form by clicking here and send it to Kathleen Sherman by mail: 

    Department of Anthropology
    Colorado State University
    Fort Collins, CO  80523-1787

    or email (Kathleen.Sherman@colostate.edu).  

    All submissions are due no later than Monday, January 30, 2012.

  • Wednesday, November 02, 2011 10:02 AM | Anonymous
    HPSfAA Members,

    HPSfAA is currently moving into the technology era. We have an amazing website and would like to use it to its fullest potential. This includes registration and information about the Spring Conference and Ghost Ranch,the publication of The Applied Anthropologist,  Member News, and Blog Posts concerning opportunities including Employment Opportunities,Grants and ResearchStudent OpportunitiesConferences and Meetings,Call for Contributors, and Service Opportunities. We would like to encourage members to use these resources.   

    In order to utilize the website to its fullest potential especially in relation to the Spring Conference, Ghost Ranch, and ballots we need everyone's information to be up to date. Please visit the following link: http://hpsfaa.wildapricot.org/Content/Members/MemberProfile.aspx to log in and confirm your information including e-mail, address, phone number, institution and membership details. If you have any problems updating your contact information and/or preferences please contact me and I can assist you in the process.

    Thank you for your time!

    Andrea Akers
    Secretary and Interim Webmaster, High Plains Society for Applied Anthropology
    Managing Editor, The Applied Anthropologist
    Masters Student, Colorado State University 

  • Wednesday, November 02, 2011 9:38 AM | Anonymous
    Hello HPSfAA Members, 

    We had a successful election this year. The outcome of the election is as follows:

    Shawn Kelley was elected as President-Elect
    Ed Knop was elected as the Publications Policy Committee Chair
    Steven Stewart and Joanne Moore were elected as Members-at-Large
    Peter Van Arsdale was elected as the Editor-in-Chief of The Applied Anthropologist
    Andrea Akers was elected as the Interim Webmaster

    Please visit: http://hpsfaa.wildapricot.org/Board_Member_List for an updated list of all the current board members.

    Thank you for participating in the 2011 Election and we hope to see you at the 2012 Spring Conference in Fort Collins!
  • Monday, October 03, 2011 2:27 PM | Anonymous

    We are pleased to be able to present this first volume of The Applied Anthropologist under our editorship.  A thirty-year record of publication is significant in any field, and with the changes that have been occurring with electronic media, it is doubly important that we keep pace.  This is the first full-scale e-publication to be sponsored by the High Plains Society for Applied Anthropology, and one of the first among peer-reviewed journals of anthropology.

    Over the years work by (and about) many of the international leaders in applied anthropology and related social science disciplines has appeared in these pages:  Meta Baba, John van Willigen, Robert Hackenberg, John Bodley,  Michael Cernea, and Peter Kunstadter are representative.  Equally important has been the work of individuals known nationally for their accomplishments:  Muriel Crespi, George De Vos, David Fetterman, Tom Greaves, Tony Paredes, and Merrill Singer are representative.

    Editors of The Applied Anthropologist and its predecessor, the High Plains Applied Anthropologist, have been particularly pleased to publish the work of researchers, field workers, and activists who are not often in the limelight, yet who have made stellar contributions behind-the-scenes, at the grassroots, or in the classroom.  Many have been members of the High Plains Society for Applied Anthropology or other LPOs.  Many work outside academia.  Some have been members of groups traditionally marginalized or excluded from scientific discourse.

    The present volume features the work of applied social scientists and activists who are clearly in the forefront.   A complementarity of interests is seen as the articles by Pedro Oliveira and Howard Stein are compared.  Both are looking at clinical anthropology through new lens; both rely upon their knowledge of psychology.  A complementarity of interests also is seen as the articles by Mark Harvey and Arthur Scarritt are compared.  Both are concerned with marginalized peoples and the racialized hierarchies that confront them; both are critical of neoliberalism.  All four of these authors are empirically rigorous, as primarily qualitative methods are employed in their endeavors.

    Commentaries and integrated sets of book reviews have been a long-standing feature of this journal.  The materials included in this volume are exemplary.  Riall Nolan tackles the issue of “buried bodies” in the field of development.   Why haven’t we, through institutions, been able to translate more of our research into meaningful changes?  Whom do we tell?  Julie Reyes tackles the issue of a “culture of ethics.”  How does this culture emerge institutionally, nurtured by social networks?  How can its lessons better be applied by anthropologists?  Through a recent book, Walter Littlemoon and Jane Ridgway address boarding school trauma in their recount of a remarkable Lakota life story; Larry Van Horn, Kathleen Sherman, and Kreg Ettenger offer insightful interpretations in turn.

    Several colleagues served as peer reviewers for two or more of the articles and commentaries that appear in this volume, and we would like to express our profound thanks:  Kreg Ettenger, Ph.D.; Joanne Moore, M.A.; Teresa Tellechea, Ph.D.; Amy Van Arsdale, Ph.D. Moore and Tellechea also serve as Associate Editors.

    Please click this link to log in and see the most recent volume of the Applied Anthropologist!

    --Peter Van Arsdale, Editor-in-Chief

    --Andrea Akers, Managing Editor


  • Tuesday, September 27, 2011 9:06 AM | Anonymous

    High Plains Society for Applied


    Ghost Ranch Retreat 2011 

    September 30-October 2

    Ghost Ranch, 

    Abiquiu, New Mexico

    Conference Program

    Friday, September 30

    4:00                    Arrival and Registration

    5:30 – 6:30      Dinner

    7:00 – 8:00      Story Circle Roundtable Discussion: “The Good, Bad and Ugly from Field and Work Experiences”

    8:00                    Social Hour

    Saturday, October 1

    7:30 – 8:30      Breakfast

    9:00 – 11:30    Panel Discussion: “Artistic Expression and Community Connections”

    ·         Howard Stein, Katy Little

    12:00 –1:00    Lunch

    1:00 – 5:30      Free Time

    1:00 – 2:30      Closed Board Meeting

    3:30 – 5:00      Student Panel: “What We Need to Get Where We Want to Go”

    ·         Joe Garrett, Kathleen Van Vlack

    5:30 – 6:30      Dinner

    6:30 – 8:00      Evening Session: Presentation of the “Poet Laureate” Award


    Universityof Arizona Presentation

    ·         Kathleen Van Vlack, Rich Stoffle

    8:00                 Social Hour

    Sunday, October 2

    9:00 – 11:00    Panel Discussion: “Dilemmas of the Contemporary Practitioner”

    ·         Rebecca Forgash, Ed Knop, Peter Van Arsdale

    11:00 –12:00   Open Board Meeting

    12:00                  Adjournment

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