SPSSI and the United Nations
SPSSI members submit proposals for panels and prepare statements to various commissions to make informed policy recommendations based on psychological research. Two of the commissions SPSSI engages with are the Commission on the Status of Women (CSW) and the Commission for Social Development (CSocD). Generally, SPSSI works in conjunction with the UN by preparing programs and panels on current social issues (e.g., ageing, children’s rights, health, social development). Statements and programs sponsored or endorsed by SPSSI require the approval of its Executive Committee.
SPSSI regularly collaborates with other UN NGOs. SPSSI is also a member of the Psychology Coalition at the United Nations (PCUN), which was founded by SPSSI United Nations NGO Team members Dr. Florence Denmark, Dr. Harold Cook, and Dr. Corann Okorodudu (who also served as its president).
SPSSI's United Nations NGO Team members (also known as "UN Representatives") are: Dr. Harold Cook, Dr. Joseph De Meyer, Dr. David Livert (Main UN Representative), Dr. Corann Okorodudu, Dr. Laurel Peterson, Dr. Deborah Fish Ragin, Dr. Rachel Ravich, and Dr. Peter Walker. Click here to learn more about SPSSI's UN Representatives.
SPSSI's United Nations NGO Interns are: Trisha Dehrone, Maya Godbole, Laura Lopez-Aybar, Priyadharshany Sandanapitchai, and Mehgol Tiv.
How To Get Involved
The Society for the Psychological Study of Social Issues (SPSSI) welcomes applications from graduate psychology students to serve as interns with its United Nations NGO Team. The position will commence in September 2020 and continues through the end of Summer 2021. Interns will learn about the UN system, and will engage with SPSSI UN/NGO representatives, other UN psychologists and other NGO interns on social issues of interest to the UN community. SPSSI UN interns serve as non-paid volunteers. Click on the link for application details. Applications for the SPSSI UN/NGO Internship Team!
*Applications are due June 15th each year
The Society for the Psychological Study of Social Issues (SPSSI) welcomes applications from psychologists to join its United Nations NGO Team. SPSSI is An accredited Non-Governmental Organization in consultative status at the United Nations with the Department of Global Communications (DGC) formally known as the Department of Public Information (DPI) the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC), and we’re active with the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF).
SPSSI UN/NGO representatives serve as non-paid volunteers but are eligible for reimbursement of modest transportation and other expenses. They attend monthly UN/SPSSI team meetings (generally the first Thursday of every month) and engage with the Psychology Coalition of NGOs at the United Nations, UN Psychology Day, and substantive NGO Committees. They participate in a variety of UN events, and share information about the priorities of the UN with SPSSI members through reports, newsletter articles and presentations at SPSSI meetings. The appointment is for two years and is renewable for additional terms of two years. There is a review of the new representative’s work at the end of the first year and continuing reviews occur every two years. Click on the link for application details. Applications to become a SPSSI Representatives at the United Nations!
*Applications are due June 15th each year
Recent SPSSI/UN NGO Activities
High-Level Political Forum on Sustainable Development Panel 2021: The Society for the Psychological Study of Social Issues (SPSSI), in partnership with missions to the United Nations (UN), nongovernmental organizations (NGOs), and independent experts, hosted this panel presentation and discussion during the July 2021 High-Level Political Forum on Sustainable Development (HLPF). The full title of this event was "Beyond the Rhetoric on 'Leaving No One Behind': Concrete Policies and Actions to Eliminate Systemic Racism in Implementation of the SDGs." This event addressed the urgent need to integrate concrete human rights policies and programs, especially policies and programs for the elimination of systemic racism and racial and ethnic discrimination, into the implementation and assessment of progress on the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). [watch recording]
ECOSOC Youth Forum Event 2021: The Society for the Psychological Study of Social Issues (SPSSI) organized a side event for the ECOSOC Youth Forum 2021. Panelists addressed the gaps in the holistic health needs of diverse youth populations across the world, which have been exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic. Panelists also emphasized the importance of empathy in building effective responses to the COVID-19 crisis and toward attainment of the UN 2030 Sustainable Development Goals Agenda. [watch recording]
The Commission on the Status of Women 65th session 2021: In coordination, the Society for the Psychological Study of Social Issues’ (SPSSI's) UN Committee sponsored a parallel event of psychologists, medical doctors, advocates, and UN representatives to discuss the causes, correlates, and consequences of intergenerational gender-based violence against women and girls. [watch recording]
Commission for Social Development 2020: SPSSI organized a panel at the United Nations Head Quarter New York on Preventing and Recovering from Homelessness: Contributions from Psychology [watch recording]
SPSSI UN/NGO Team presents, "Advancing Science in a Global Context: Scientific Engagement at the United Nations" at the 10th anniversary conference of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) Science & Human Rights Conference. (October 2019)
SPSSI UN/NGO Team participates in "HLPF 2019: Youth Climate Action for Small Island Developing States." (July 2019)
SPSSI UN/NGO Team participates in "The Time is Now: Psychological Contributions to Global Gender Equality - 12th Annual Psychology Day at the United Nations." (April 2019)
SPSSI UN/NGO Team is featured in a SPSSI Graduate Student Committee webinar, "Getting Global How to Integrate the United Nations into Your Graduate School Experience." (March 2019)
SPSSI UN/NGO Team hosts event entitled, "Commission on the Status of Women 2019: Women Leaders & Decision Makers Across Cultures: Lessons from Psychology." (March 2019)
SPSSI UN/NGO Team participates in SPSSI's 2019 Advocacy Day on Capitol Hill. (January 2019
Entities we work with
Commission on the Status of Women
Commission for Social Development
Commission Population and Development
High Level Political Forum on Sustainable Development
Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues
Commission for Science & Technology for Development
Psychology Coalition of NGOs Accredited at the United Nations (PUNCAN)
American Psychological Association (APA)
Society for Industrial and Organizational Psychology
United Nations Resources
How Our Work Aligns with the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals
The United Nations Member States adopted the 17 Sustainable Development Goals in 2015 because they understood that it would not be possible to build a peaceful world if steps were not taken to achieve economic and social development for all people everywhere, and ensure that their rights were protected. The Sustainable Goals cover a broad range of issues, including poverty, hunger, health, education, climate change, gender equality, water, sanitation, energy, environment and social justice.