Information, GSA Virtual Conference 2020 (update 9/24)

9/25/2020 update

We look forward to welcoming you to the GSA Virtual Conference 2020, Sept. 29-Oct. 4, 11am-4pm Eastern Time.

  • You can find a PDF of the schedule *here*.
  • Our conference will take place via our virtual conference provider OpenWater here: *GSA Virtual Conference*. As the conference dates near, this website will be available to registered attendees only.
  • You can register here.
  • Note also that there is a Community Fund for those individuals for whom the registration fee would pose a financial challenge. You can donate to it *here* and help someone attend the conference, and information for applying for the funds can be found *here*.

We will update this page regularly. If you have a question that is not answered here or on the FAQ page, feel free to contact Executive Director David Barclay ( or Operations Director Benita Blessing ( 

Known technical issues (check here for known issues and status reports)

  • 9/25: Some users have reported an error message when logging in to the Virtual Conference website. In some cases, this is resolved when members use their GSA login ID (and not the email address, unless that is the same as the
  • ... Read more

(09/07/2020) GSA Preliminary Schedule Virtual Conference 2020

You can download the preliminary session schedule spreadsheet here (updated 09/07/2020): Updated GSA Virtual Conference Preliminary Schedule

Make sure you save the date for Arts Night! 

The conference will take place Sept. 29-Oct. 4, 11am-4pm Eastern Time.

Please search for your name/session/paper title by going to the "Search Sheet" box on the top right of the spreadsheet and verify that the information is accurate.

If your session looks correct, you do not need to do anything else.

**If you see errors (schedule conflicts, edits, etc.), you can note them on this form: GSA Preliminary Schedule, Corrections**

This short video will walk you through the above steps if you prefer visual instructions: GSA Schedule Video

Feel free to contact Operations Director Dr. Benita Blessing ( with questions or concerns. Read more

The GSA Community Fund

Dear GSA Colleagues and Friends,

Earlier this year, generous members of the German Studies Association established The GSA Community Fund, which is meant to assist individuals financially affected by the COVID-19 outbreak in their efforts to participate in the GSA's virtual conference from 29 September to 4 October 2020.

We write to share specific application and deadline information for The GSA Community Fund, below, and ask that you share this information widely.

Many thanks to the generous donors who have made The GSA Community Fund possible.


The GSA Community Fund Selection Committee



To assist individuals who have been financially affected by the COVID-19 outbreak, generous members of the German Studies Association established in early 2020 The GSA Community Fund:

Awards from The GSA Community Fund are reserved for individuals participating in the GSA’s 2020 virtual conference from 29 September to 4 October 2020.

Grants from The GSA Community Fund will be used to cover conference registration. In exceptional cases, grants can also cover a 1-year membership AND conference registration.


The GSA Community Fund is... Read more

Registration now open, Virtual Conference 2020

Dear members and friends of the GSA,


Here are some important updates to our plans for the forthcoming Virtual Conference of the GSA from 29/30 September through 4 October. Please do read our previous emails and our website as well, especially the FAQ page, which is regularly updated:  (Note that the schedule will be posted as soon as we have it ready.)


First, conference registration is now open.  Please go to to proceed.  We hope that as many of you as possible will participate in what promises to be an exciting event despite the complications caused by the pandemic.  Please note that, following a decision by the GSA Board, all participants will first have to read and agree to the GSA’s Conduct and Harassment Policy before they can proceed with registration (  Similarly, for reasons connected with the nature of this virtual conference, session participants will be asked to agree or not agree with having their sessions recorded during the conference.  Recorded sessions will be archived and available for 30 days after the conference to registered participants only.


Second, we can announce that, after carefully reviewing a number of options, the GSA Executive... Read more

Updates + FAQs, GSA Virtual Conference

GSA 2020 (updated 15 Sept. 2020)

You can register for the conference here: Conference Registration and look at the preliminary schedule (and submit any editing corrections) here: Preliminary Schedule

Applications are open for the Community Fund.

(Please click here to see a version of an email that went out to seminar conveners, roundtable conveners, panels and presenters, and individual paper presenters on July 21.)

Publishers and exhibitors can find information at the bottom of this FAQ.

Virtual Conference FAQ 

(Please check back regularly for updates.)


General information about the move to a virtual conference:

  • Why are we switching our annual conference?

Joint Statement in Appreciation and Defense of International Students

In appreciation and defense of international students in German Studies and beyond

A promise of solidarity from DDGC, WiG, the GSA, BGHRA, and the CAUTG Social Justice Committee, 

15 July 2020

Today we, teachers and researchers in German Studies, share the relief our students and friends feel at seeing the new restrictions on the Student and Exchange Visitor Program (SEVP), issued by the United States Department of State and ICE on July 6, 2020, rescinded without further delay. We recognize that this rescindment would not have been forthcoming from the federal government, were it not for a timely and expensive suit supported by over 200 colleges and universities across the country. We are grateful for everyone—aides, researchers, lawyers, plaintiffs, food delivery workers, officers of the court, and family members—who unexpectedly sacrificed a week of summer, during this pandemic, to head off a punitive policy that ought never have been conceived in the first place. 

We further recognize that such punitive policies will likely continue to be introduced and implemented, damaging our schools’, students’, and communities’ well-being over the coming months, and that we will soon need to rely again on these colleagues’ unflinching and courageous work to defeat the next... Read more

2020 GSA Virtual Conference

Dear members and friends of the GSA,

This is the first in a series of regular updates on our plans for the rest of this year and beyond.  Please forgive the length, but we want to be as transparent and detailed as possible.

After many weeks of research, discussion, observation, and negotiation, the Executive Council of the German Studies Association is able to announce that the 44th Annual Conference will take place as a virtual conference. The membership survey to which so many of you responded made it very clear that the majority of our members were reluctant to attend an in-person conference this year even if public health concerns were sharply reduced and/or transatlantic travel were again possible.  It is very apparent that those concerns will not be allayed in the fall of this year, and that travel to Washington, DC, will be risky or impossible or both.  Consequently, the GSA Board unanimously decided at a special meeting to move the conference online.

We are happy to report that our host hotel, the Crystal Gateway Marriott, has very generously agreed to release us from our 2020 contract without penalty.  That penalty would have been very substantial, so we

... Read more

GSA Conference Survey and Election Results

Please note: the survey will close July 3, 2020, 5pm EDT. 

Dear GSA Members,

As promised in our Spring Newsletter, we write to you today in the wake of a special GSA Executive Board meeting: on June 15th, Board members convened on Zoom to discuss various options for our conference in the fall, originally scheduled for October 1-4 in Washington, DC. We realize that many of you are anxious to hear whether, and in what form, that conference will take place. While we are still in discussions with the hotel and with providers of online conferences, we can assure you that we have every intention of holding our conference, even if the exact format is yet to be finalized. For this purpose, we are also seeking your input by way of this brief six-question survey, which we would ask you to complete by the end of June. In return, we plan to provide you with further details of our fall conference planning by the middle of July.

Please contact Dr. Benita Blessing ( if you have any questions about the survey. The survey will also be sent to members' email addresses and made available through social media.... Read more

DEI Committee Statement

June 3, 2020

To: GSA Membership

From:  The newly established Committee for the Initiative on Diversity, Equality, and Inclusion (DEI)

This initiative was established by the Executive Board of the GSA in spring 2020. We the undersigned, as its first members, have been meeting to chart a future course for the GSA to assure that it transforms itself into a more diverse, equitable, and inclusive professional organization. Utilizing the diversity of our own scholarly research and teaching and experiences within the profession and the society at large, our first priority has been to open up communication about how differently the organization and its activities are experienced by its members, especially those who come from historically and currently underrepresented and socioeconomically underprivileged backgrounds within German Studies.

The current national situation in the United States illustrates why we each need to commit to understanding societal hierarchies and racial differences around police brutality, the very real dangers of being Black or Brown in America, and the systemic racism that infuses our country.

Genocide, slavery, racism, antisemitism, xenophobia, and many other forms of discriminatory practices saturate the history of the country in which our organization is based.

It is well documented by now that... Read more

CfA: Editor, German Studies Review

The German Studies Association is searching for an editor for its flagship journal, the German Studies Review, a leading journal of interdisciplinary German Studies. Applications are due July 15, 2020. Please click here for more information. Read more

Spring GSA Newsletter

Please read our Spring Newsletter. It includes some updates on our plans for the year, information about upcoming elections, and more! Read more

Volunteers Needed for Moderating/Commenting

Dear colleagues, 

As we finalize our GSA program, we need several moderators and commentators right away, and we will need a list of volunteers in case of future withdrawals from the program. If you have no more than one role in the conference (defined as participation of any kind in a panel, roundtable, or seminar) and you’re willing to take on another, please go to the submissions portal ( and fill out the Moderator and Commentator Application.

We recognize that it is difficult for all of us to think about plans for a conference during these uncertain times. We'll keep members posted with updates on this website and via email. 

We appreciate your assistance!


  Read more


UPDATE: GSA conference plans and COVID-19

30 March 2020

Dear members and friends of the German Studies Association,

The German Studies Association is keenly aware of the myriad ways in which the COVID-19 pandemic is affecting every aspect of our lives, including our work and our scholarship. Above all, the health and safety of all our members (and their families) in each of the 31 countries we inhabit take top priority. The Executive Council is constantly monitoring the situation, even as the ground seems to shift beneath our feet every day. We are working closely and steadily with a number of partner organizations, especially as we consider the future of our annual conference scheduled for the beginning of October. 

Meanwhile, our Program Committee has been reviewing the proposals that were submitted earlier this year, and within a week we shall begin to send out official acceptance notifications.  This promises to be one of our strongest programs yet, and in proceeding with these notifications in the face of all this uncertainty, we want to recognize the thought and preparation that everyone has invested into the October conference already, even if its exact shape is still up in the air. No matter... Read more