Our theme for July is academic freedom. Throughout the month we will offer questions, articles, and resources regarding this topic. Please join in the discussion about academic freedom on our Facebook page.
By Tom Ginsburg
Academic inquiry depends on autonomy from politics. The job of scholars is to search for truth, which requires them to pursue ideas wherever they go, and to debate them vigorously. Like seemingly everything else in our charged and polarized era, this idea has come under attack in recent years, with demands that “unsafe” ideas be purged and suppressed. Despite lip service, very few colleges are truly committed to academic freedom. The result is needless controversy and slipping standards. The solution is simple: Colleges must institutionalize the protection of academic freedom by devoting resources to training, establishing standards, and hearing complaints when norms are threatened.