The German Studies Association is the premier multi- and interdisciplinary association of scholars focused on German, Austrian, and Swiss history, literature, culture studies, political science, and economics. A non-profit educational organization, GSA promotes research and study of German-speaking countries’ diverse histories, cultures, languages, and politics in global contexts.
Membership is open to anyone interested in German studies. The membership generally consists of professors and advanced students at universities and colleges in North America, with several hundred international members from throughout the world.
The GSA was founded in 1976 as the Western Association for German Studies (WAGS). The organization was re-named German Studies Association in 1984. Professor Gerald R. Kleinfeld was a co-founder of WAGS/GSA and served as its founding executive director until his retirement in 2005. Professor David E. Barclay succeeded Kleinfeld in 2006. Professor Margaret E. Menninger has been GSA's Executive Director since 2021.
GSA is a member of the American Council of Learned Societies (ACLS). GSA holds an annual Conference and publishes a scholarly journal—German Studies Review—as well as a Newsletter.
The Conference of the Association is held in the Fall, generally between mid-September and mid-October. Each of the approximately 150 sessions features three scholarly papers, a moderator, and a commentator. The topics are distributed among the main research areas of the Association, and papers may be offered in English or German.
German Studies Review is published three times each year, in February, May, and October. An issue generally contains six articles and 60 book reviews. Articles and book reviews in history, literature, culture studies, political science, as well as interdisciplinary themes, are published in English or German.
The Newsletter is now published three times a year. Each issue contains information about the profession, grants, research and teaching, archival reports, and information about conferences and events as well as news of importance to the membership.
Guidelines for curricula in German Studies are offered by GSA for assistance to universities, colleges, and high schools in planning programs in German Studies.
The GSA Endowment Fund provides financial support to Association projects, the annual conference, and general operations. Gifts and donations to GSA are tax deductible contributions in the United States and many other countries.