Jim Rebar
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President's Message

Steve W. J. Kozlowski

One of the most gratifying things about being president of SIOP is that I am in an excellent position to observe all of the many, many broad projects and specific activities in which SIOP committees and members are engaged. We have a remarkable proportion of our membership voluntarily engaged in promoting the science and practice of I-O psychology; providing useful and effective services to SIOP’s membership; and helping to make organizations, our nation, and world beyond better. We are small, as professional organizations go, but we are mighty in our impact!

On a related note, I want to acknowledge the dedicated efforts of the members of the SIOP Executive Board (EB) who have been conducting “business as usual” and working to implement my presidential agenda. I’m reflecting on this now (as I write this column in November 2015) because I will only lead one more EB meeting (in January 2016, about the time you will read this issue of TIP). I will preside over the SIOP conference (in sunny SoCal) in April and then, at the end of the conference, I will hand over SIOP leadership to your Incoming President Jim Outtz. Jim will lead the subsequent EB meeting that occurs immediately following the conference. Time flies when you are having fun!

EB officers and committee chairs constitute a broad cross-section of SIOP’s membership. We have differing vantage points and viewpoints across the spectrum of the science and practice of I-O psychology. Nonetheless, our discussions and deliberations are driven by consensual values centering on using rigorous evidence-based inference for decision making, upholding the highest standards of professionalism, and maintaining the upmost respect for each other in our deliberations. We strive to make the Society stronger, to enhance its reach and impact, and to do good: good for our membership and good for the world of work. Our EB meetings are productive, we advance the agenda, and we move SIOP forward. We do not get stuck in “eddy current” discussions that go in circles and go nowhere. We don’t point fingers and we don’t make charges. We look at the data objectively. Working with this EB—your SIOP leaders— has been a privilege. Each EB meeting has helped to advance my presidential agenda of having an impact and making a difference which requires a substantial amount of effort by your officers, committee chairs, and committee members. I am grateful for their dedica­tion, and I hope that you, our members, also appreciate all that they do to make SIOP better. I can only scratch the surface in acknowledging all the work that is being accomplished (so my apologies to all the many worthy efforts that I do not mention). 

Publications and Communications 

One of the more exciting set of develop­ments is centered on our publications strat­egy. Deborah Rupp, Publications officer, has been conducting a strategic review of SIOP's publications portfolio and has spear­headed a number of exciting initiatives across the science and practice spectrum. We are pursuing projects designed to bet­ter connect scientific findings and practical applications (one of my key agenda items) and to provide publication opportunities for practitioners to report projects, tech­niques, and tools that advance 1-0 psychol­ogy practice. I cannot say more at this time as these initiatives are still under develop­ment and review, but I expect to brief you about them in more detail my next (and last) column and during the SIOP confer­ence. In addition, Alex Alonso, Communica­tions officer, and Deb, in collaboration with Morrie Mullins, TIP editor, are developing a communications strategy designed to inte­grate content and messaging across all SIOP communications (e.g., mySIOP, TIP) and publications (e.g., /OP, Professional Prac­tice and Frontiers Series) platforms. They will also be exploring new and better ways of electronically packaging TIP to make it easier to read, reference, and search. 

Science and Practice Advocacy: National and International

SIOP is continuing to build its infrastructure and capacity to advance the advocacy of I-O psychology science and practice. Elsewhere in this issue, Seth Kaplan, Chair of the Government Relations Advocacy Team (GREAT) Committee, and Laura Uttley, Lewis-Burke Associates, report on the Executive Order issued by President Obama in September that directs federal agencies to incorporate social and behavioral sciences in their decision making processes. This is a HUGE development that substantially advances our science and practice advocacy efforts with the federal government and has the potential to create numerous opportunities for our members to help advance I-O psychology in federal policy and practices. Notably, SIOP Fellow Lori Foster was a member of the inaugural Social and Behavioral Sciences Team within the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy.

With respect to some of the other activities on the advocacy front, first, Fred Oswald, Science officer, and the chairs of three relevant SIOP Committees (GREAT, Seth Kaplan; Professional Practice, Mark Poteet; Scientific Affairs, Steve Stark) developed comments that were submitted on SIOP’s behalf with the assistance of Lewis-Burke Associates on the proposed changes to the federal “Common Rule” that governs Institutional Research Board (IRB) rules and regulations. The upshot of the proposed changes is that they will substantially reduce the reporting burden for much of the research and practice activities in which SIOP members routinely engage.

Second, did you know that I-O psychology is not considered a STEM science by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS)? I did not until it was brought to my attention by one of our foreign grad students. Virtually every other subdiscipline of psychology (e.g., clinical, cognitive, developmental, social) is considered STEM by DHS, but I-O psychology is not. The implications have to do with the limited amount of time foreign I-O graduates have to find a job in the U.S. before their visas expire and they are required to leave, thus putting them at a significant disadvantage. SIOP, with very helpful strategic guidance from Lewis-Burke Associates, responded to an open comment opportunity to advocate that the DHS should adopt the classification system used by the National Science Foundation that does recognize I-O psychology as a STEM discipline.

Third, one of my key initiatives is to develop an infrastructure within SIOP to help support advocacy efforts, both top down— so SIOP leadership can identify members with relevant interests and expertise—and bottom up—so members can self-organize around issues of common interest to create communities of practice. Cris Banks, Professional Practice officer, has been spearheading an effort to develop a “Registry” for SIOP members interested in employee and organizational health and well-being. This will serve as a model for future issue-oriented topics as well. Adding oneself to the registry is similar to adding oneself to the consultant locator service, so it is an “opt in” system. You will hear more as the implementation SIOP’s new web site software system stabilizes.

Fourth, SIOP has established a collaboration relationship with the EEOC through the efforts of Mark Poteet, Professional Practice. This is a developing relationship so I expect there will be more to report in the coming months.

Fifth, Milt Hakel, SIOP Foundation president, and Fred Oswald, Science officer, organized the Inter-Association Data Task Force (ITADTF), which represents the interests of an international cross-section of applied psychology associations and individuals; they serve as its cochairs. What prompted this is a proposed draft accord for “Open Data for Open Science” under development by the Expert Working Group of Science International (SI). According to a communique:

Science International is a new coalition of the major international science bodies— the International Social Science Council (ISSC), the InterAcademy Partnership (IAP), The International Council for Science (ICSU), and The World Academy of Sciences (TWAS) —to bring its members’ combined international representation and credibility to act as a single global voice for science in the international policy arena. At its first meeting, to be held from 7-9 December in Pretoria, South Africa, the participating institutions will discuss the topic of big data/open data. The objectives of “Science International” are: To consolidate a fragmented global science policymaking landscape, creating a single, recognized and authoritative global voice for science in the international policy arena; To deepen strategic alignment amongst partner organizations and develop a platform to catalyze future high-impact initiatives; To tackle one issue of relevance to global science policy each year and to follow up on its recommendations over the following two to three years.

This has obvious implications for the science and practice of I-O psychology. ITADTF provided comments on the third draft of the accord, which was adopted at a meeting in early December. After inspecting the accord Milt noted: “After a couple of hours spent comparing the final Accord with Draft 3 and our comments about it, my conclusion is that our time and effort was well spent. I had little expectation that the major premise, ‘Open data should be the default position for publicly funded science,’ would be altered. Nevertheless, inspection of the long version reveals that the full Accord as adopted has become more consistent with the positions we advocated in our comments on Draft 3.” You can view the accord here: http://

Finally, Nadene Venter, chief operations officer of the Society of Industrial and Organizational Psychology of South Africa (SIOPSA), made a presentation to the EB regarding the potential to establish a formal collaboration between SIOP and SIOPSA. Incoming President Jim Outtz was instrumental in this process. SIOP is expanding its international collaboration activities, so expect more information as this process unfolds.

Other News and Developments

I attended the Leading Edge Consortium (LEC) that was held in Boston in early October. The topic was Building a High Performance Organization: A Fresh Look at Performance Management. The LEC was chaired by Elaine Pulakos and developed by her able committee members Mariangela Battista, Allan Church, Erica Desrosiers, Gene Johnson, and Cheryl Paulin. It was my first LEC and I thought the structure and content was quite good. In a nutshell, performance evaluation systems in organizations used for personnel accounting functions are shifting towards performance management systems that are designed to enhance motivation and effectiveness. By design, most of the presentations had a decidedly practical orientation, although I took note that changes being proposed and implemented by I-O psychologists all have deep empirical support in the literature. I suggested to Elaine and Nancy Tippins, Professional Practice Series editor, that they ought to organize a book for the series based on the LEC, as the material was engaging and cohesive. Stay tuned.

Start making your plans for the next LEC. It will be chaired by Alexis Fink, Intel, and the topic is Analytics and Big Data. Big data is everywhere across the spectrum of practice and research. It entails new analytic techniques to make sense of big data (e.g., data mining) as well as new research methods that generate big data (e.g., computational modeling). This LEC should prove fascinating and is truly on the leading edge.

The SIOP Education and Training (E&T) Guidelines for Graduate Education are undergoing a revision required by APA as it has been some time since they were last updated. This is an enormous undertaking that has been ably managed by Whitney Botsford Morgan, chair of E&T, Subcommittee Chair Stephanie Payne, and Laura Koppes Bryan, Instructional and Educational officer.

At the fall 2015 EB meeting, the ad hoc LBGT Committee was voted to become a SIOP standing committee to better reflect the continuity of it ongoing activities and growing community of interest. Congratulations to the hard work of its many committee members and supporters, Katina Sawyer, chair, and Mo Wang, Membership Services officer.

The January EB meeting, to be held at our upcoming conference venue in sunny southern California, will mark a handoff in our APA Council Representatives. I want to thank and acknowledge Rodney Lowman and Deborah Whetzel for their service. SIOP has an historic role in APA and ongoing interests that need to be monitored and advocated. There is always something brewing in APA governance, so it is an important and time consuming role, perhaps especially now with the release of the Hoffman report with its implications as an impetus for many likely changes at APA. I offer many thanks to Rodney and Deborah for their efforts on SIOP’s behalf and I welcome SIOP’s new APA Council Representatives, Georgia Chao and Gary Latham. Welcome!

For those of you who submitted proposals or papers for the SIOP conference, you were informed of their status in early December—right on schedule. That was amazing because the SIOP Administrative Office (AO) was in the midst of a major software upgrade that encompassed all of SIOP’s administrative systems (internal and external), including those used to manage conference submissions, reviews, and communications. According to Evan Sinar, Conferences and Programs Officers, “It was a massive effort due to the technology issues and system changes, probably double or triple [the effort of] a typical year which is already quite heavy—basically the entire process had to be created from scratch and rechecked numerous times.” Thanks to Dave Nershi, everyone in the AO, the SIOP Program Committee, and SIOP Program Chair Scott Tonidandel for their herculean efforts to assemble the conference program on schedule!

I would also like to acknowledge Presidential Theme Track Chair, Zack Horn, and his committee members Tara Behrend, Stu Carr, Gloria Gonzalez-Morales, Ryan Johnson, and Emily Stehura for the creative set of presentations and activities they have organized to showcase my theme of having an impact and making a difference.

Finally, the SIOP elections held in November will have the EB welcoming new and returning members in April when the EB meets following the Annual Conference. Welcome to SIOP Incoming President Fred Oswald, Incoming External Affairs Officer Janet Barnes-Farrell, Incoming Instructional and Educational Officer Milt Hakel, and Incoming Professional Practice Officer Rob Silzer. In the meantime, make your plans to attend the 31st Annual Conference in sunny southern California April 14–16, 2016! I hope to see you there!

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