The Gerontological Society of America (GSA) is a multidisciplinary organization devoted to research and education in all aspects of gerontology: medical, biological, psychological and social. As of 2006 GSA had about 5,000 members.
History and Organization
GSA was incorporated in New York City in 1945 as an outgrowth of a group of scientists and physicians who had been calling themselves "the Club for Research on Ageing" since the 1930s. GSA has been holding scientific conferences since 1946.
In 1969 GSA moved its main office from St. Louis, Missouri to Washington, D.C. GSA along with the American Geriatrics Society "lobbied" for the formation of a National Gerontological Institute. These efforts bore fruit in 1974 when President Richard Nixon signed legislation to create the National Institute on Aging (NIA). Several GSA members immediately became founding members of NIA's National Advisory Council.
In 1946 GSA began publishing Journal of Gerontology. In 1961 material in Journal of Gerontology dealing with GSA organization and activities was moved to a new journal called The Gerontologist. In 1988 Journal of Gerontology was renamed Journals of Gerontology to reflect the fact that it was a composite of four journals having four separate editors. In 1995 the four journals being published under one cover were split into two magazines ("two covers"): (1) the Journals of Gerontology: Biological Sciences and Medical Sciences and (2) the Journals of Gerontology: Psychological Sciences and Social Sciences. Also in 1995 GSA began publishing The Public Policy and Aging Report to deal specifically with policy issues, and directed to those outside as well as within the academic community.
The primary activities of GSA are to
- publish refereed journals
- publish special books and papers
- organize congressional briefings
- promote gerontology in higher education
- promote gerontology in public policy
- organize a four-day Annual Scientific Meeting
- provide continuing education in gerontology
- recruit minority researchers into gerontology