University of Minnesota
University of Minnesota

Academic Freedom, the Public Trust, & the Entrepreneurial Univer$ity. May 16, 2014

Academic Freedom, the Public Trust, & the Entrepreneurial Univer$ity: Reflections on the AAUP’s Recommended Principles to Guide Academy-University Relationships

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University research, especially in STEM fields, is increasingly oriented toward the market, involving a diverse range of collaborations between academic researchers and industry. The American Association of University Professors has recently articulated a set of principles intended to guide such relationships; and the University of Minnesota AAUP chapter, together with the Provost’s Imagine Chair in Humanities, Art, & Design and the Institute for Advanced Study, are sponsoring a forum to discuss those recommendations, as well as broader concerns for the integrity and trustworthiness of university research. We invite you to join in a conversation about the AAUP recommendations and about how those of us at the University of Minnesota are thinking about matters of regulatory compliance as well as broader matters of research integrity, moving beyond specific policies and procedures to questions about the place for research—in whatever field—that does not promise to meet immediate marketable demands, and, importantly, about the place of the humanities and the arts in an increasingly entrepreneurial university. Universities need to be sites of critical engagement—crossing boundaries of disciplines and diverse communities, drawing on historical and cross-cultural perspectives—articulating and confronting the controversies that the research will inevitably meet when it moves out into the world. Such critical engagement, questioning what we are doing and why and how and for whose benefit, will be neither easy nor comfortable; but even the most practical and market-oriented research will be the better for it.


Cary Nelson is Jubilee Professor of Liberal Arts and Sciences at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Among his 29 books are several dealing with the politics and economics of higher education, including this year’s Recommended Principles to Guide Academy-Industry Relationships. He served as national AAUP president from 2006 to 2012.

David Korn, M.D. is presently Consultant in Pathology at Mass General Hospital and Professor of Pathology at Harvard Medical School. Previously he was the Inaugural Vice-Provost for Research at Harvard University; the Senior Vice-President for Biomedical and Health Sciences Research (Policy) at the Association of American Medical Colleges; and, for 30 years, Professor of Pathology at Stanford University, where he was the Founding Chairman of the Department of Pathology, then University Vice President and Dean of Medicine.

University of Minnesota Respondents:

Brian Herman, Vice-President for Research
Lynn Zentner, Director, Office of Institutional Compliance


Naomi Scheman, Professor of Philosophy and Gender, Women, and Sexuality Studies, 2012-2014 Imagine Chair in Humanities, Art, & Design, President of the University of Minnesota chapter of the AAUP
This panel occurred on Friday, May 16, from 3:00-5:00pm in Best Buy Theater, Northrop.

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