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In August of 1972, at the Prince Hotel in Tokyo, Japan, the International Society for Research on Aggression came into being. The ISRA was founded by a group of scholars who were in the area for the 20th Annual International Congress of Psychology. It was a small group when it was started. While the beginnings of the group may have been humble, the group grew over the years and they now have more than 250 members from dozens of countries around the globe. All of the members have an interest in studying aggression and violence from a scientific perspective. Because of the interdisciplinary nature of the group, it’s possible to learn a variety of different theories regarding violence in humans.

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A Unique Take on Aggression

The membership of the ISRA has a diverse range of specialties. Within the group, there are many psychologists and psychiatrists, but there are quite a few sociologists, anthropologists, criminologists, pharmacologists, education specialists, and even animal behavior specialists as members. In addition to being an interdisciplinary group, the ISRA is truly international and lives up to its name. They meet every two years on alternating continents. They’ve had their meetings in a number of different locations over the years, including places such as Hungary, the United States, Canada, Spain, and Greece.

The meetings are a time for members to get together and learn more about what each of their specialties is able to bring to the table in this area of research. As a forensic psychologist, it’s possible to have a unique perspective because you would have seen the result of violence and aggression first hand, and would be able to both share insight and gather different thoughts from others at the society meetings. Joining the ISRA could be a great move for a forensic psychologist that has an interest in this area.

Becoming a Member of the International Society for Research on Aggression

Researchers and scholars will be able to apply for membership through the ISRA website. The membership dues are just $60 per year and only $30 per year for student members. You will find that the ISRA has four different types of memberships, so it should be possible to find something that fits your needs. The Fellows membership is for any scientist who is working in any social, psychological, or biological science that deals with aggression. Associates are those who support the goals of the Society, but who are not currently a part of aggression research. Students are graduate students nominated by a member who is a Fellow of the Society. There are also lifetime memberships – those memberships are chosen directly by the Society.

Some of the benefits that members of the ISRA will enjoy include a subscription to Aggressive Behavior, the Society’s official journal. They will also receive the ISRA Bulletin which has news on members, conferences, and more.

As you can see, joining the ISRA can benefit a forensic psychologist. If you work in the area of criminal justice and you see the results of aggression and violence on a daily basis, it makes sense to want to have some type of understanding of it. Joining the ISRA could be a step in the right direction.

Please visit for more information about The International Society for Research on Aggression (IRSA).


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