The International Society for Autism Research (INSAR) is a professional, scientific organization devoted to advancing knowledge about autism spectrum disorders. It is the parent organization that is responsible for running the annual International Meeting for Autism Research (IMFAR).
There continues to be some confusion about applying for INSAR membership and registering for the International Meeting for Autism Research (IMFAR). These are two distinct processes with distinct benefits. It is not mandatory to become a member of INSAR in order to participate in IMFAR. However, there are a number of advantages to INSAR membership that can be found on the INSAR webpage (autism-insar.org). The web page should be used for (1) paying your annual membership dues (due by January 1 of each year), as well as (2) registering for IMFAR (starting in January/February). Membership dues go toward supporting all of the Society's activities, and provide several important benefits, including:
1)Free online access to Autism Research
2)IMFAR registration discounts
3)Ability to vote and run for elected office in INSAR (next elections to be in February, 2011)
4)Ability to post advertisements on the INSAR website's Jobs Posting page
I want to take this opportunity to update you on the Society activities. One of our major recent achievements was the creation of the Society's journal, Autism Research. Our first issue of Autism Research was published in March of 2008. We will continue to publish every other month, before becoming a monthly publication within the next few years. Judging from the number of full text article downloads (29,709 in 2010 and 9,997 in 2011 as of March), as well as the feedback from the scientific community, our new Journal is already a resounding success. Autism Research prides itself on fast turn around times for the review process, and aspires to be the leading publication in the field. The journal is now covered by Medline, ISI, Index Medicus and other bibliographic services. Autism Research's Editorial Board (front inside cover) is composed of numerous well-recognized leaders in the field. All INSAR members are entitled to free online access to Autism Research. In order to receive this benefit, you must register through the INSAR website and create a username and password. You can then logon to the INSAR website and use it as a portal to Autism Research. Please also approach your local librarian and encourage them to subscribe to the Journal.
The Society's webpage (http://autism-insar.org/) continues to be a source of important information, containing Society news, an archive of past IMFAR meeting abstracts, a jobs board, and links to Autism Research, various funding sources and autism organizations. There are also audio archives of a number of Keynote addresses and other main lectures from the recent IMFAR meeting. INSAR will be undertaking a thorough updating of the web site this year under the guidance of Simon Baron-Cohen, Chair of the Web Committee. The Society will be providing more information on this effort in the near future.
IMFAR 2010 was held in Philadelphia May 20–22 and was a resounding success with approximately 1700 participants. Jennifer Pinto-Martin, PhD (meeting Chairperson) and David Mandell, ScD, (Chair of the Scientific Program Committee—along with Co-Chair Manny DiCicco Bloom) deserve congratulations for organizing a productive and enjoyable meeting.
INSAR continues to grow its membership and the scope of its activities. I encourage you to consider becoming a member and then becoming active in the Society. The current Board of Directors includes David Amaral (President), Simon Baron-Cohen (Vice President), Deborah Fein (Treasurer), Laura Klinger (Secretary) and Robert Schultz, PhD (Past President—ex officio). Committee Chairs include: Susan Bookheimer, Ph.D., Membership, Geraldine Dawson, Nominations and Elections, Marshalyn Yeargin-Allsopp and Peter Bell, Diversity Committee, Simon Baron-Cohen, Web Committee and Mathew Goodwin and Mark Shen, Student Committee, The Society is greatly indebted to the volunteer service of those who serve on the Board, the various committees and those who help run the annual meeting.