The Ira and Harriet Reiss Theory Award


The purpose of the Ira and Harriet Reiss Theory Award is to highlight and support theoretical advances in social science theories concerning human sexuality.  The winner will be chosen annually for the best social science article, chapter, or book published in the previous year in which theoretical explanations of human sexual attitudes and behaviors are developed.  In addition to careful theoretical development, stress will be placed on the use of relevant empirical evidence to examine the validity of the theoretical explanations. 


This award is jointly sponsored by the Foundation for the Scientific Study of Sexuality (FSSS)  and by the Society for the Scientific Study of Sexuality (SSSS). The author (s) of the winning contribution will receive a plaque and a $500. award. In addition, up to $500. to cover expenses to attend the meeting and present a plenary will be available. After being notified, the author will be expected to present a plenary address, based on the winning publication, at the next year’s annual meeting of the Society for the Scientific Study of Sexuality.  


Nominations may be submitted to the Award Committee following instructions below.


Nominations must be received by May 15th 2013. The award winner (s) will be notified by October 15, 2013 and will be expected to present a Plenary Address at the 2014 SSSS meeting.


For more information contact the committee chair: William A. Fisher:



Instructions For Submitting Nominations For

The 2012 Ira And Harriet Reiss Theory Award


 1.  Send an electronic copy of an article or chapter and four copies of a book. Be sure the full publication information is included.  The publication must have appeared in 2012.   The full nomination material must be received before May 15th 2013.


2.  Include a letter with a paragraph or two explaining why this publication should be considered for this award. Indicate specifically how this publication is relevant for the award addressing the following award criteria: a) That it develops a social science theory or, in the case of a multidisciplinary theory, that social science is a significant part of the total theory

 b) That it build a theoretical explanation of human sexual attitudes and behavior c) That the explanation be examined in light of relevant empirical evidence.



We prefer electronic submissions of both the article or chapter and letter of nomination. Send electronic submissions to: William A. Fisher:   


If you are sending your submission in hard copy, mail 4 copies   of the book, article or chapter, plus 1 copy of your letter. For a book send a check for $25 to cover mailing to committee members. This should be made out to FSSS and included with the copies of the book and nomination letter. Mail to:  


William A. Fisher, Ph.D.

Chairperson of the Ira and Harriet Reiss Theory Award

Society for the Scientific Study of Sexuality

881 Third Street, Ste B-5, Whitehall, PA 18052





Award Recipients

  • 2006 - Jeanette Norris, N. Tatiana Masters, and Tina Zawacki. Cognitive Mediation of Women's Sexual Decision Making: The Influence of Alcohol, Contextual Factors, and Background Variables
  • 2007 - James V. Kohl. The Mind's Eyes: Human Pheromones, Neuroscience, and Male Sexual Preferences
  • 2008 - Lisa Diamond. A Dynamical Systems Approach to the Development and Expression of Female Same-Sex Sexuality
  • 2009 - Deanna Carpenter, Erick Janssen, Cynthia Graham, Harrie Vorst, J. Wicherts. Women's Scores on the Sexual Inhibition/Sexual Excitation Scales: Gender Similarities and Differences
  • 2010 - Richard Lippa. Sex Differences in Sex Drive, Sociosexuality, and Height Across 53-Nations: Testing Evolutionary and Social Structure Theories 
  • 2011 - Christopher Ryan and Cacilda Jetha. Sex at Dawn 
  • 2012 - Sari M. VanAnders, PhD. The Steroid/Peptide Theory of Social Bond
  • 2013 - Rachel Salk, M.S. and Janet Shibley Hyde, Ph.D. Contemporary Genetics for Gender Researchers: Not your Grandma's Genetics Anymore


Join Today

In addition to voting rights in the Society, participation in regional activities, and reduced conference fees, members receive:

a scientific quarterly

synthesizing recent theoretical and research advances

an online newsletter which includes information on conferences, training opportunities, job announcements and more

an online yearly directory of the membership and other information about SSSS

Membership Information