AAUP Updates

A new report undertakes an in-depth review of a politically and ideologically driven assault unparalleled in US history. If sustained, this assault threatens the very survival of meaningful higher education in the state, with dire implications for the entire country.

The AAUP has issued a request for proposals to obtain proposals from external vendors for the purpose of adopting a replacement for its existing website content management system.

A statement released today reaffirms the "right to hear" principle concerning the presence of controversial outside speakers on college campuses, and expands on the relationship between controversies involving invited speakers and increasing partisan political intrusion in higher education.

An update from Rudy Fichtenbaum, AAUP immediate past president and chief negotiator for the AAUP, on negotiations with the AAUP staff union.

The AAUP condemns the climate of intimidation that now attempts to silence people who express unpopular views on the current conflict in the Middle East. College and university leaders have no obligation to speak out on the most controversial issues of the day. Their duty is to protect the academic freedom, free speech, and associational rights of faculty and students to speak on all topics of public or political interest without fear of intimidation, retaliation, or punishment.

The AAUP has been in negotiations and meeting regularly with our staff union for over two years. At this time, when our profession is under unprecedented attack, our priorities are to protect and defend the profession and to serve the members of the AAUP, who pay the dues to run this organization, while offering the staff a fair contract. At this point, our offer is a salary increase over three years of 18 percent and a rich benefits package. The AAUP proposed, in late August, that the parties participate in mediation to resolve the few remaining issues. The union did not respond to our proposal to participate in mediation. In early October, the AAUP sent a request to FMCS which finally prompted the union to respond. Mediation has been scheduled to begin on November 3. All members of the elected governing body and all members of management’s bargaining team are volunteers. We find the decisions to pit members against volunteer leaders and to go on “rolling strikes” after agreeing to participate in mediation inexplicable.

We were saddened to learn of the death of longtime AAUP leader John T. McNay this past Friday, October 27. John was active in the University of Cincinnati chapter, a former president of the Ohio state conference, a member of the AAUP's governing Council, and the chair of the Committee on Government Relations.

AAUP in the News

Wed, 11/29/2023  |  WHYY

Penn’s chapter of the American Association of University Professors released an Oct. 28  letter citing concerns about trustee influence and harassment, asserting that “our university leadership has intensified fear and animosity by associating antisemitism and terrorism with an overly broad range of academic programming and political speech.”

Fri, 11/17/2023  |  Austin Chronicle

Polly Strong, president of the UT chapter of the AAUP, told Rufo that she believed in intellectual diversity but that a commitment to the concept wasn’t what she heard from him. She said her personal hero is John Dewey, the pragmatist philosopher who advocated for academic freedom, due process, and neutrality in higher learning and asked if Rufo supported those values.

Rufo derided Dewey, saying it would have been better if he’d never been born, and dismissed his values. “Academic freedom, due process, neutrality – those are means, not ends,” Rufo said. “If you have an erasure of ends, what you get is sheer power politics, you get everything reducible to will and domination, and then you get an academic life that drifts into witchcraft, into phrenology, into gender studies.” Rufo concluded by saying that academics who continue to adhere to Dewey’s principles, “frankly, deserve what’s coming.”

Strong was completely unawed by the implied threat. “The ‘ends’ of academic freedom, due process, and shared governance is education for a democratic society,” she said simply. “That is the basis of John Dewey’s vision and many, many university professors believe that today.”

Wed, 11/15/2023  |  The Minnesota Daily

Speech against Israel and its actions does not constitute hate speech or antisemitism. Calls to boycott, divest from, and sanction Israel, as well as structural analyses of Israel through the lens of apartheid or settler colonialism, lie in the realm of free speech and academic inquiry regardless of whether or not they are popular, and must not be the subjects of bans in an open society. - Op Ed by the Executive Committee of the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities AAUP Chapter.

Mon, 11/13/2023  |  Hattiesburg American

Southern Miss is one of the nation's top research facilities, yet its faculty are paid well below the average of similarly rated institutions. The AAUP at the University of Southern Mississippi along with the United Campus Workers, and USM Faculty Senate, held a rally today to draw attention to the dire need for universitywide pay increases.

Sun, 11/05/2023  |  The Daily Orange

The Syracuse University Chapter of the AAUP released a statement objecting to recent statements by Provost Ritter that appear to attempt to curtail free and open inquiry including expression of controversial ideas that some may consider wrong or offensive.

Tue, 10/31/2023  |  Austin American-Statesman

In a letter to UT Tyler president Kirk Calhoun, the AAUP stated that the "administration’s action to dismiss Professor Koster without having first demonstrated adequacy of cause in a faculty hearing is fundamentally at odds with basic standards of academic due process."

Upcoming Events

May 31, 2024 to June 1, 2024

A meeting of the AAUP's Committee A for Academic Freedom and Tenure.

June 13, 2024 to June 16, 2024

The 2024 AAUP Conference and Biennial Meeting will take place in the Washington, DC, area.

October 25, 2024 to October 26, 2024

A meeting of the AAUP's Committee A on Academic Freedom and Tenure.

E-mail Updates



The AAUP has issued a request for proposals to obtain proposals from external vendors for the purpose of adopting a replacement for its existing website content management system.

Submissions for the next volume of the Journal of Academic Freedom are due by March 5, 2024. Scheduled for publication in fall 2024, the volume seeks original articles that investigate the links between landscapes of social power and the historical development and contemporary status of academic freedom.

See open positions and learn how to apply.