Standing Committee and Subcommittee Reports

Defending the Freedom to Innovate: Faculty Intellectual Property Rights after Stanford v. Roche

Tensions over control of the fruits of faculty scholarship have been slowly building since the 1980s and have intensified over the last three years. There have long been differences of opinion over ownership of patentable inventions, but recently a number of universities have categorically asserted that they own the products of faculty research. And there is increasing institutional interest in declaring ownership of faculty intellectual property subject to copyright—most notably evident in demands that faculty members cede ownership of online courses and other instructional materials to their universities, a trend that began escalating in the 2012–13 academic year.

On Partnerships with Foreign Governments: The Case of Confucius Institutes

Allowing any third-party control of academic matters is inconsistent with principles of academic freedom, shared governance, and the institutional autonomy of colleges and universities. Confucius Institutes function as an arm of the Chinese state and are allowed to ignore these principles.

On Trigger Warnings

A current threat to academic freedom in the classroom comes from a demand that teachers provide warnings in advance if assigned material contains anything that might trigger difficult emotional responses for students.

Busting the Myths: The Annual Report on the Economic Status of the Profession, 2014-15

Last year, the American Association of University Professors launched the One Faculty campaign to improve the job security and working conditions of contingent faculty. Writing about the campaign in the November–December 2014 issue of Academe, Jamie Owen Daniel, the AAUP’s director of organizing, asserted that “shrinking public resources, administrators’ random introduction of ‘creative disruption’ agendas, and the increasing possibility that state legislators will push for more right-to-work legislation” can be resisted only by “reclaiming the narrative” through “aggressive and unified faculties organized to speak together.”

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