American Academy of Arts and Sciences

American Academy of Arts and Sciences

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The American Academy of Arts and Sciences is an independent policy research center that conducts multidisciplinary studies of complex and emerging problems. The Academy’s elected members are leaders in the academic disciplines, the arts, business, and public affairs.

James Bowdoin
James Bowdoin
James Bowdoin II was an American political and intellectual leader from Boston, Massachusetts during the American Revolution. He served in both branches of the Massachusetts General Court in the colonial era and was president of the state's constitutional convention...

, John Adams
John Adams
John Adams was an American lawyer, statesman, diplomat and political theorist. A leading champion of independence in 1776, he was the second President of the United States...

, and John Hancock
John Hancock
John Hancock was a merchant, statesman, and prominent Patriot of the American Revolution. He served as president of the Second Continental Congress and was the first and third Governor of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts...

 founded the Academy in Boston during the American Revolution
American Revolution
The American Revolution was the political upheaval during the last half of the 18th century in which thirteen colonies in North America joined together to break free from the British Empire, combining to become the United States of America...

. Their objective, as stated in its charter, was to "cultivate every art and science which may tend to advance the interest, honour, dignity, and happiness of a free, independent, and virtuous people." They were joined by Robert Treat Paine
Robert Treat Paine
Robert Treat Paine was a signer of the Declaration of Independence as a representative of Massachusetts.-Early life and ancestors:...

 and 58 local community leaders to charter the organization in 1780. Other prominent men soon joined, and early members included Benjamin Franklin
Benjamin Franklin
Dr. Benjamin Franklin was one of the Founding Fathers of the United States. A noted polymath, Franklin was a leading author, printer, political theorist, politician, postmaster, scientist, musician, inventor, satirist, civic activist, statesman, and diplomat...

, George Washington
George Washington
George Washington was the dominant military and political leader of the new United States of America from 1775 to 1799. He led the American victory over Great Britain in the American Revolutionary War as commander-in-chief of the Continental Army from 1775 to 1783, and presided over the writing of...

, Thomas Jefferson
Thomas Jefferson
Thomas Jefferson was the principal author of the United States Declaration of Independence and the Statute of Virginia for Religious Freedom , the third President of the United States and founder of the University of Virginia...

 and Alexander Hamilton
Alexander Hamilton
Alexander Hamilton was a Founding Father, soldier, economist, political philosopher, one of America's first constitutional lawyers and the first United States Secretary of the Treasury...

.

The modern Academy is headquartered in Cambridge, Massachusetts
Cambridge, Massachusetts
Cambridge is a city in Middlesex County, Massachusetts, United States, in the Greater Boston area. It was named in honor of the University of Cambridge in England, an important center of the Puritan theology embraced by the town's founders. Cambridge is home to two of the world's most prominent...

, in a building designed by Kallmann McKinnell and Wood. It sponsors conferences, organizes research projects, and publishes a quarterly journal, Dædalus
Daedalus (journal)
Dædalus is a peer-reviewed academic journal founded in 1955 as the Journal of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. It is published by MIT Press on behalf of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. Each issue addresses a theme with essays on the arts, sciences, and humanities. Special...

. The Academy has approximately 4,000 fellows and 600 foreign honorary members. About 200 Nobel Laureates are included in the membership.

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Not to be confused with

  • United States National Academy of Sciences
    United States National Academy of Sciences
    The National Academy of Sciences is a corporation in the United States whose members serve pro bono as "advisers to the nation on science, engineering, and medicine." As a national academy, new members of the organization are elected annually by current members, based on their distinguished and...

  • Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences
    Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences
    The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences is a professional honorary organization dedicated to the advancement of the arts and sciences of motion pictures...

  • American Academy of Arts and Letters
  • American Association for the Advancement of Science
    American Association for the Advancement of Science
    The American Association for the Advancement of Science is an international non-profit organization with the stated goals of promoting cooperation among scientists, defending scientific freedom, encouraging scientific responsibility, and supporting scientific education and science outreach for the...

  • World Academy of Art and Science
    World Academy of Art and Science
    The World Academy of Art and Science is an international non-governmental scientific organization, an informal and non-official world network of individual fellows elected for distinguished accomplishments in the fields of natural and social sciences, arts and the humanities...

  • National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences
    National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences
    The National Academy of Recording Arts & Sciences, Inc., known variously as The Recording Academy or NARAS, is a U.S. organization of musicians, producers, recording engineers and other recording professionals dedicated to improving the quality of life and cultural condition for music and its...