Charles Koch Foundation Raises Concern Over Proposal to Mandate Speaker Viewpoints at Arizona Universities

A state policymaker in Arizona is proposing requiring public universities to monitor and balance the ideological perspectives of speakers invited to campus. Raising concern over the proposal, Charles Koch Foundation Vice President of Philanthropy Charlie Ruger issued the following statement:

“An open exchange of ideas doesn’t happen through mandate. Universities need academic freedom to foster a dynamic, open intellectual environment that makes discovery possible. Efforts by legislators to place a heavy hand on everything from campus speakers to faculty composition to course content impose a political orthodoxy contrary to academic freedom.”

There is a growing and worrying partisan divide around trust in higher education that likely motivates these types of policy proposals. Advocates of higher education can look to repair these divides by speaking to the underlying concern and ensuring scholars feel free to seek the truth without fear of intimidation, threats, or undue influence from those outside of and within their institutions.

Learn more about the commitment of the Foundation and our partners to academic freedom here, here, and here.

02-18-2021 01:50pm

SkillUp Together Fund will provide direct assistance to help Americans access lifelong learning opportunities

Grants through the $30 million SkillUp Together Fund will connect workers to career support and upskilling programs.

Read more

02-17-2021 09:29am

Harmel Academy of the Trades marries skills-based education with humanities

Harmel Academy of the Trades in Grand Rapids, Michigan, is establishing an income-share agreement to help students finance their degree.

Read more

02-09-2021 09:22am

Johns Hopkins partnership will foster diverse educational opportunities

A new $1 million grant to JHU's Program on Educational Pluralism will support research, thought leadership, and a School Culture 360 survey.

Read more

Sign up for our newsletter

Regular news and impact stories