A few hundred academics, students, and others concerned about the state of higher education gathered at the Sheraton Times Square in Manhattan last month for the second annual Heterodox Academy conference. The two-day conference centered on how to foster diverse opinions, open inquiry, and constructive disagreement on college and university campuses.
Founded in 2015 by Georgetown law professor Nick Rosenkranz, Emory University sociologist Chris Martin, and New York University social psychologist Jonathan Haidt, Heterodox Academy is a nonpartisan collection of more than 3,300 professors, administrators, and graduate students, who want to improve higher education from within.
Their raison d’être is an important one. Conservatives are vastly underrepresented among professors as compared to the public at large. The leftward tilt is especially marked in the arts, humanities, and law. Among administrators who engage with students, “liberal staff members outnumber their conservative counterparts by the astonishing ratio of 12-to-1,” according to data compiled by Sarah Lawrence College political scientist Samuel Abrams.
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