The Illusion of Institutional Neutrality by Peter W. Wood | Report

College presidents often come under the spotlight for their political pronouncements or lack thereof. Since college presidents must contend with difficult issues of morality, principle, and politics as leaders of higher education institutions, what is the best way to address the problems that require action? While no rule exists, college presidents often rely on the principle of "institutional neutrality" to avoid statements angering a divided student and faculty body. Peter W. Wood, in this essay, discusses the origins of this principle and ultimately argues against its use. Instead, universities ought to stand for clearly stated values and defend them forthrightly against whatever pressures arise from students, faculty, trustees, politicians, foreign powers, or the general public.

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January 21, 2016