SIOP Essay

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The Society for Industrial and Organizational Psychology, Inc. (SIOP), a professional society, is the Division 14 of the American Psychological Association (APA) and an organizational affiliate of the Association for Psychological Science (APS). SIOP’s Administrative Office is located in Bowling Green, Ohio, in the United States.

I-O psychology focuses on how people behave in organizations, particularly the workplace. A society of more than 7,300 members internationally and from across the globe with representation from academic, practitioner, and corporate sectors, SIOP’s mission is to “enhance human well-being and performance in organizational and work settings by promoting the science, practice, and teaching of industrial-organizational (I-O) psychology.” To accomplish this, SIOP supports its members in their efforts to study, apply, and teach I-O psychology; provides forums for IO psychologists to exchange research, insights, and information; identifies opportunities for expanding and developing the science and practice of I-O psychology; monitors and addresses challenges to the understanding and practice of I-O psychology; promotes the education of current and future I-O psychologists; and promotes public awareness of the field of I-O psychology.

SIOP’s roots date back to 1892 with the founding of the American Psychological Association (APA). In 1937 members of several applied groups, including APA’s clinical section, formed the American Association of Applied Psychology (AAAP). Section D, Industrial and Business, was one of four sections within AAAP. In 1945 AAAP, APA, and the Society for the Psychological Study of Social Issues merged and reorganized as the APA. AAAP Section D became APA Division 14, Industrial and Business Psychology. In 1962 “Business” was dropped from the name, and in 1973, “Organizational” was added, and Division 14 became the Division of Industrial and Organizational Psychology. To establish some independence from APA, in 1982 Division 14 incorporated as the Society for Industrial and Organizational Psychology, Inc.

Organization And Membership

SIOP operates on a budget of $1.8 million annually. Its organizational structure consists of an executive committee composed of a president, president-elect, past president, five representatives to APA, financial officer/secretary, and eight portfolio positions. SIOP also has several standing committees (Fellowship, Membership, Election, Program, Program-APA, Program-APS, Scientific Affairs, Professional Practice, Education and Training, The Industrial-Organizational Psychologist (TIP), Workshops, Long-Range Planning, State Affairs, Awards, Organizational Frontiers Series, Professional Practice Series, Society Conference, Historian, Ethnic Minority Affairs, Placement and APA/APS Relations). The presidential seat is transferred at SIOP’s annual conference. The SIOP Foundation provides financial support for the advancement of I-O psychology.

Membership in SIOP is open to Fellows, Members, and Associates of APA and Fellows and Members of the American Psychological Society, Canadian Psychological Association (CPA), and European Association of Work and Organizational Psychology (EAWOP). SIOP is affiliated with both APS and APA, and its members can join either. SIOP has experienced growth of membership over the years, growing from 5,841 members in May 2001 to more than 7,300 members in January 2009. The two largest sectors for membership employment in 2006 were colleges and universities (39 percent of members) and private sector consulting organizations (22.9 percent). Members with the highest annual income were employed in the pharmaceutical industry.

Publications And Events

SIOP also creates, publishes, and distributes numerous publications to its members and the I-O psychology community. Managed by the SIOP Administrative Office, The Industrial-Organizational Psychologist (TIP) is a quarterly publication that provides members news, reports, and noncommercial information related to I-O psychology. Industrial and Organizational Psychology: Perspectives on Science and Practice (IOP) is a quarterly journal organized with two focal articles on a specific I-O issue followed by peer reviewed responses and then replies from the focal article authors. The first issue was distributed in March 2008. Also created in the SIOP Administrative Office, SIOP News briefs is e-mailed to members monthly and presents deadlines, activities, and announcements. SIOP also publishes two book series: Organizational Frontiers and the Professional Practice Series.

In addition to its publications, SIOP organizes two large events each year. Since 1985, SIOP has hosted a conference in a different city every spring. The conference, which took on a 3-day format in 2008, includes hundreds of peer-reviewed sessions highlighting I-O psychology research, practice, and theory. In 2008, 4,069 registrants visited the conference from 45 countries. SIOP’s Leading Edge Consortium also takes place in a different city every year. The consortium takes an in-depth look at a specific topic that is on the leading edge of I-O psychology. The event averages 200 attendees. SIOP’s Web site,, offers information on all of these publications and events as well as SIOP’s online store PubHub, membership directory, media resources, consultant locator services, a job/resume board (JobNet), and other sources of information on I-O psychology.


  1. Ruth Kanfer, Gilad Chen, and Robert D. Pritchard, Work Motivation: Past, Present and Future (Hove: Psychology, 2008).

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