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HxA in the News

HxA is shaping the conversation on viewpoint diversity in the academy. Selected stories are shared below. Media who would like to reach us for comments can contact us at questions@heterodoxacademy.org or call (646) 992-3732.
  • 1 in 4 Academics Believe Colleagues Should be Fired for Holding Opinions Like Restricting Immigration

    Newsweek March 25, 2021

    “I think the intolerant attitude of graduate students and young academics helps to scare off dissenting research, repels conservatives from academia, and contributes to the growing intolerance of the academy,” Kaufmann said. “There are more intolerant progressive activists entering onto committees at every level, pushing initiatives such as bias reporting, unconscious bias training or decolonizing the curriculum, all of which tend to violate academic freedom.”

  • The Miseducation of America’s Elites

    Pittsburgh Post-Gazette March 21, 2021

    “I think it’s true that many people would rather violate their stated principles than be iced out of their social network. But this is a situation that goes beyond getting shunted to a bad table at the Robin Hood gala. To resist this ideology is to go against the entire institutional world.”

  • Why Did Amazon Cancel Justice Thomas?

    Wall Street Journal March 2, 2021

    “Mr. Pack was particularly dismayed that his film was pulled during Black History Month. ‘Clarence Thomas, to my mind, is the most important African-American leader in America today,’ he said, adding that people ought to be exposed to a range of black opinions. He’s right, and what Amazon has done is a disservice to anyone—black or white—who is interested in the rich history of black Americans.”

  • The New War on Woke

    Arc Digital February 26, 2021

    “This is the new phase in America’s education culture war: the use of state power to suppress ‘woke’ speech and viewpoints. No longer content to compete at the level of ideas, and upset with what they see as a dangerous and un-American ideology, legislators in New Hampshire are trying to get the government to forbid it. And they’re not alone.”

  • Guest Post: Heterodox Academy Isn’t Perfect -- but You (Yes, You!) Can Help Improve It

    Inside Higher Ed February 15, 2021

    “This is the point of Heterodox Academy — encouraging people not to wait for other people to step up, but encouraging our members to take point themselves, to themselves intervene in these debates, and themselves take the lead in reforming the institutions they are embedded in.”

  • A Failure to Educate

    Inside Higher Ed January 8, 2021

    This week’s Capitol riots have been repeatedly described as “unthinkable.” Yet happen they did, so how do we start to think about them? Many academics have an answer: the humanities.

  • What Americans Think of Professors

    American Enterprise Institute December 7, 2020

    Americans are not collectively trusting of faculty whatsoever and this is more proof of what happens when the academy becomes politicized and the search for truth becomes both prejudiced and biased.

  • A Diagnosis for American Polarization

    Wall Street Journal November 3, 2020

    ‘Splitting’ is a defense mechanism by which we frame ideas or people in all-or-nothing terms.

  • Dear America, We Can Still Do This!

    Public Square Magazine November 3, 2020

    Domestic peacekeepers are speaking out with everything they’ve got—reminding this country about its historic capacity to hold and work through serious disagreements productively. It’s time to listen before it’s too late.

  • Musa al-Gharbi on the Value of Intellectual Diversity

    Sean Carroll's Mindscapes October 19, 2020

    In the service of seeking truth, there would seem to be value in intellectual diversity, both in keeping ourselves honest and in the possibility of new ideas coming from unexpected quarters. That’s true in the natural sciences, but even more so in the humanities and social sciences, where the right/wrong distinction is sometimes less clear. But academia isn’t always diverse; as an empirical fact, there are a lot more liberals on university faculties than there are conservatives. I talk with Musa al-Gharbi about why this is true — self-selection? discrimination? — the extent to which it’s a real problem, and how we should better think about the value of diverse viewpoints.

  • Is This Thing On?

    Inside Higher Ed October 14, 2020

    Jeffrey Aaron Snyder and Amna Khalid explore the thorny issues surrounding classroom recordings, “reasonable accommodations” and academic freedom.

  • When Students Are Afraid to Speak, We All Lose

    Real Clear Education October 8, 2020

    The College Free Speech Rankings project, a joint undertaking by FIRE, College Pulse, and RealClearEducation released their report last week. Based on a survey of nearly 20,000 students at 55 colleges, this is the largest-ever examination of how conducive colleges and universities are to free expression.

    This project clearly showcases that while national level data can present certain general impressions of campus free-speech climate, there is immense value in grounding our analysis in campus-specific factors to understand how students read the free speech environment of their schools.

  • The Trump Administration Says Diversity Training Can Be Harmful. What Does the Research Say?

    The Chronicle of Higher Education September 27, 2020

    President Trump’s order criticizes training that “perpetuates racial stereotypes and division and can use subtle coercive pressure to ensure conformity of viewpoint.” The text then states: “Research also suggests that blame-focused diversity training reinforces biases and decreases opportunities for minorities.”

    While it’s unclear whether colleges — many of which receive federal grants — would face consequences under the order, the directive has reignited debate around diversity training and whether it does any good.

    The issue is top of mind for college leaders, who are grappling with higher education’s broader reckoning over racial injustice and facing greater pressure from students and others to require such training for faculty and staff members.

    What does the research actually say about diversity training’s effectiveness?

  • Be a Fox, Not a Hedgehog

    Discourse Magazine September 27, 2020

    Ben Klutsey talks to Ilana Redstone about critical thinking and intellectual humility.

  • Academics Are Really, Really Worried About Their Freedom

    The Atlantic September 1, 2020

    Some fear for their career because they don’t believe progressive orthodoxies.

  • This Is A Chance To Fix Diversity Training

    Forbes June 11, 2020

    For years now, one of the most constant features across a wide array of institutions has been diversity and inclusion programming, with many making it a top priority. Yet, much of that programming has not had the desired effect. This is a chance to do better.

  • Conservative Academics Reflect on the Relationship of Politics to Scholarship

    National Review June 3, 2020

    Is a self-consciously conservative approach to the humanities and social sciences desirable? Prominent right-leaning scholars are skeptical.

  • It’s time to rebuild—with diversity in mind

    University Business June 1, 2020

    COVID-19 is offering leaders the opportunity to re-envision higher ed—fostering more open inquiry, viewpoint diversity and constructive disagreement

  • Jonathan Haidt Is Trying to Heal America’s Divisions

    The Atlantic May 24, 2020

    The psychologist shares his thoughts on the pandemic, polarization, and politics.

  • Campus-specific analyses of the climate for free expression reveal stark differences between schools

    The Fire May 15, 2020

    This post explores some of the findings from these campus-specific surveys, and when appropriate to do so, compares them to each other and to the national survey data available. These analyses help to demonstrate how national surveys of college students can obscure considerable variation between campuses, but also help identify broad trends that may be occurring among the current cohort of college students regardless of the school they attend.

  • Jonathan Haidt Explains How Social Media Drives Polarization

    PBS December 4, 2019

    In a time of heightened political tension, Jonathan Haidt has a good idea of what’s driving this polarized atmosphere around the world. He is a social psychologist who believes social media has transformed in recent years to become an “outrage machine,” spreading anger and toxicity. He sits down with Hari to discuss this difficult problem and what the possible solutions could be.

  • 7 Ways of Looking at Diversity

    Inside Higher Ed November 21, 2019

    There are all kinds of ways that people talk about identity and diversity these days.

  • 2019 Survey of Campus Speech Experts

    RealClear Education October 24, 2019

    Controversies over free speech on college campuses are in the news seemingly every week, whether it’s an unpopular guest speaker being shouted down, a voluntary student group being banned from campus, or a professor losing his job over something he said in the classroom. While most Americans consider open inquiry and academic freedom essential to the mission of a university, the debate over what can or cannot be said on campus is far from settled at most schools today.

  • The New Campus Deplorables

    Forbes October 23, 2019

    Surveys show that the already strong leftish orientation among faculty has strengthened over the years. At the same time, however, there is a smaller but growing counter movement.

  • The Case for Diversity Has Been Made. Let’s Move Past It: raceAhead

    Fortune October 22, 2019

    People are unsatisfied with the changes being made towards diversity and inclusion.

  • Can We Guarantee That Colleges Are Intellectually Diverse?

    New York Times August 30, 2019

    According to some critics of higher education, as college students around the country head back to class, they will search in vain for classroom debate where all opinions are welcome.

  • Academic and Political Elitism

    Inside Higher Ed August 27, 2019

    The political leanings of highly educated or intelligent people tend not to be any more rational or informed than anyone else’s.

  • Too Noxious for Tenure?

    The Chronicle of Higher Education August 1, 2019

    A few weeks ago, at a National Conservativism conference in Washington D.C., one of the speakers, the University of Pennsylvania law professor Amy Wax, argued that the United States would be “better off if our country is dominated numerically…

  • HxA Conference Examines How to Respectfully Tackle Difficult Topics

    Diverse Issues In Higher Education June 23, 2019

    Attendees at the Heterodox Academy conference in New York participated in frank discussions about how to address complex issues from free speech to building community.

  • Williams: Some colleges committed to ideological diversity

    Boston Herald June 5, 2019

    If you want to send your youngster to colleges that are seriously committed to civil and diverse debate, pick up a copy of the June 2019 edition of Reason magazine for some guidance.

  • 10 Colleges Where You Won’t Have to Walk On Eggshells

    Reason Magazine June 5, 2019

    These schools are seriously committed to civil and diverse debate.

  • The Dilemma of Activist Scholars on the Left

    Open Democracy February 3, 2019

    If progressive academics want to work with ‘the people,’ then we’ll have to meet ‘the people’ where they are.

  • What My Fellow Conservatives Can Learn From The Left

    Weekly Standard November 29, 2018

    Conservatives play an essential role as gatekeepers. Vetting some of the left’s perspectives and ideas, even in this polarized environment, could resonate with their base.

  • ‘Do You Value Freedom of Expression?’ 6 Questions for Your College Tour

    Fortune October 22, 2018

    Open inquiry and constructive disagreement are essential for allowing institutions of higher learning to advance their missions of education and discovery. Yet increasingly, professors and students alike are describing the toll that fear of being publicly reprimanded for your ideas—and thus choosing to withhold those ideas from classroom discussions—is having on campus culture and the pursuit of knowledge.

  • College Campus Viewpoint Diversity and Free Speech

    C-Span 2 October 10, 2018

    Authors talked about free speech on American campuses. The participants were Mark Lilla, author of The Once and Future Liberal; Nadine Strossen, author of Hate; April Kelly-Woessner, author of The Still Divided Academy; Samuel Abrams, author of Education and the Commercial Mindset; and Jonathan Haidt, author of The Righteous Mind

  • When College Students Self-Censor, Society Loses

    The Hill October 3, 2018

    The most effective policymakers weave together the best ideas from a range of perspectives in order to address society’s most intractable problems.

  • Heterodox Academy Fights for Intellectual Freedom and Diversity Among Professors

    Reason July 4, 2018

    For all the student speech that’s being squashed on college campuses these days, higher education faces an even-more serious threat: intellectual conformity among professors, researchers, and scholars. Over the past 25 years, for instance, the “American academy went from leaning left to being almost entirely on the left. Similar trends and problems are occurring in the UK and Canada.”

  • Deb Mashek on viewpoint diversity and the HxA Open Mind Conference and Awards

    Bold June 8, 2018

    Debra Mashek, executive director at Heterodox Academy, spoke with Bold hosts Carrie Sheffield and Clay Aiken about free speech on university campuses and how academia has a shared responsibility to allow for open inquiry.

  • A New Leader in the Push for Diversity of Thought on Campus

    The Atlantic February 6, 2018

    Amid recent tumult in academia, where student protests have been common and clashes over free speech and intellectual inquiry have made national headlines, these academics agreed with the view that university life requires encountering different perspectives in an environment where people are free to constructively challenge one another.

  • Colleges Pledge Tolerance for Diverse Opinions, But Skeptics Remain

    Wall Street Journal June 24, 2017

    A string of protests on college campuses that shut down events hosting conservative speakers has prompted universities around the country to pledge more tolerance for diverse opinions, but skeptics say they’ll believe it when they see it.

  • Q&A with Heterodox Academy: A New Champion for Viewpoint Diversity

    American Council of Trustees and Alumni May 15, 2017

    What does the science of social psychology have to tell us about the current challenges and threats to free speech? A great deal, according to Dr. Jonathan Haidt, Thomas Cooley Professor of Ethical Leadership at New York University’s Stern School of Business.

  • The Opening of the Liberal Mind

    Wall Street Journal May 11, 2017

    Wesleyan president Michael S. Roth on why universities need affirmative action for the study of conservative, libertarian and religious ideas

  • Jonathan Haidt on the Cultural Roots of Campus Rage

    The Wall Street Journal April 2, 2017

    An unorthodox professor explains the ‘new religion’ that drives the intolerance and violence at places like Middlebury and Berkeley.

  • Northwestern student government endorses free speech, viewpoint diversity

    FIRE March 17, 2017

    Northwestern University’s student government passed a bold and sweeping resolution this month asking the school to recommit to its existing speech-protective policies, resist censorship attempts from both internal and legislative sources, and prioritize intellectual and viewpoint diversity as part of ongoing inclusiveness efforts.

  • Campuses Take a Stand When Protests Go too Far

    The Wall Street Journal March 17, 2017

    In a move to expose students to more diverse viewpoints, colleges and universities have invited controversial figures to speak, resulting in disruptive protests. Here’s a look at how three schools are drawing the line between the free exchange of ideas and the right to protest those ideas.

  • The Dangerous Safety of College

    The New York Times March 12, 2017

    The moral of the recent melee at Middlebury College, where students shouted down and chased away a controversial social scientist, isn’t just about free speech, though that’s the rubric under which the ugly incident has been tucked. It’s about emotional coddling. It’s about intellectual impoverishment.

  • Jon Haidt discusses recent events at Middlebury College with Frank Bruni

    Charlie Rose March 6, 2017

    Frank Bruni, an op-ed columnist for The New York Times and NYU professor Jonathan Haidt discuss free speech on college campuses, following recent violence at Middlebury College and UC Berkeley.

  • Academics find voice in struggle against ‘intolerant left’ on campus

    The Times of London February 25, 2017

    If you are organising a university party, beware that fancy dress could encourage cultural appropriation. If you are planning a talk on feminism, remember that Germaine Greer will be no-platformed for transphobia. If you are teaching a literature course, always use trigger warnings for difficult material — language is violence.

  • How to Make Sense of College Rankings

    The New York Times October 30, 2016

    “The interaction between a student and an institution is not the same as the interaction between a student and a refrigerator.”

  • The dramatic shift among college professors that’s hurting students’ education

    The Washington Post January 11, 2016

    If you’ve spent time in a college or university any time in the past quarter-century you probably aren’t surprised to hear that professors have become strikingly more liberal.

  • Chart of the Day: Universities Are Pretty Liberal Places

    Mother Jones January 6, 2016

    The chart on the right comes from Heterodox Academy, a group founded a few months ago to promote more ideological diversity on university campuses. What it shows is unsurprising: over the past few decades, university faculties have become almost entirely liberal.

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