The university today is under attack from all sides. Parents and students resent the escalating costs of education and wonder where the money is being spent. Aspiring scholars feel betrayed by an institution that prepares them for nonexistent jobs. Critics on the right condemn the teachers who neglect "the canon" while critics on the left condemn the creeping corporatism on campus. Politicians seek greater control over the conduct of research and add new conditions to the use of government funds. Worst of all, the academics are increasingly uneasy in an environment that fosters competition, discourages cooperation, and has made "publish or perish" a condition of survival.
Donald Kennedy, the former president of Stanford University and currently a member of its faculty, has been at the front lines of the issues confounding the academy today. In this important new book, he brings his experience and concern to bear on the present state of the university. He examines teaching, graduate training, research, and their ethical context in the research university. Aware of the numerous pressures that academics face, from the pursuit of open inquiry in the midst of culture wars, to confusion and controversy over the ownership of ideas, to the scramble for declining research funds and facilities, he explores the whys and wherefores of academic misconduct, be it scholarly, financial, or personal.
Kennedy suggests that meaningful reform cannot take place until more rigorous standards of academic responsibilityto students, the university, and the publicare embraced by both faculty and the administration. With vision and compassion, he offers an important antidote to recent attacks from without that decry the university and the professoriate, and calls upon the college community to counter those attacks by looking within and fulfilling its duties.
Donald Kennedy is President Emeritus and Bing Professor of Environmental Science, Emeritus, at Stanford University.
Table of Contents
Academic Freedom, Academic Duty
To Serve the University
To Tell the Truth
To Reach beyond the Walls
What People are Saying About This
This is an extraordinary book. Kennedy's rich experience and incisive intellect provide the reader with deep insights into one of greatest institutions, the research university. These insights illuminate core tasks, values, organizational problems, great accomplishments, and paths twoard a creative future for the research university. Anyone who cares about the prospects for higher education will find this book valuable.
After twelve years at the helm of Stanford, Donald Kennedy has just the right stuff to help us understand that the university is not an Ivory Tower but a vibrant institution that both conserves our highest attainments and leads the way into new knowledge domains, not locally or even just nationally, but globally. This is a book for all who care about higher education. Warren Christopher, former Secretary of State of the United States
David A. Hamburg
This is an extraordinary book. Kennedy's rich experience and incisive intellect provide the reader with deep insights into one of greatest institutions, the research university. These insights illuminate core tasks, values, organizational problems, great accomplishments, and paths twoard a creative future for the research university. Anyone who cares about the prospects for higher education will find this book valuable. David A. Hamburg, M.D., President Emeritus of the Carnegie Corporation of New York
John W. Gardner
Academic Duty is an immensely impressive tour of the American university by a guide who has lived what he describes. He speaks with admirable objectivity and fairness of the world he knows so well. He describes with even-handed candor the problems the universities face, and shows how they might meet the challenges ahead. Academic Duty will take its place on the very short list of classic works on the American university. John W. Gardner, former Secretary of Health, Education, and Welfare, and founder of Common Cause
Academic Duty 4 out of 5based on
mdreid on LibraryThing
21 days ago
Although this is now a decade old, it is a very clearly and insightfully written book about the challenges and responsibilities of academics. Teaching, mentoring, publishing, commercialisation, and engaging with the public are all examined by Kennedy (former president of Stanford) with carefully chosen hypotheticals and a acknowledgement of the complexities inherit in many of these issues. Highly recommended.