School of Public Policy Hosts Panel Discussion on Political Partisanship in American Higher Education

September 19, 2016  | 2 min read

Join the School of Public Policy as we enter in to a provocative discussion about "viewpoint diversity" in one of America's most important institutions. This book event and panel discussion about political partisanship in American higher education with introductory remarks from Dr. Jon Shields from his new book, Passing on the Right: Conservative Professors in the Progressive University (Oxford University Press), will take place on Friday, September 23, 2016, at 11:30 at The California Club in downtown Los Angeles.

To say that academia is politically progressive is a generally accepted fact of American life. But exactly how stark is this political culture in the academy, and what might it mean for what we know about the world around us – particularly from social science research?

In his new ground-breaking book (coauthored with Dr. Joshua Dunn), Passing on the Right: Conservative Professors in the Progressive University (Oxford University Press), Dr. Jon Shields examines these issues through over 150 interviews with mostly conservative professors at universities around the country. He finds many professors who relish their uniqueness in the workplace, while others having to hide their political views . . . at least until they earn tenure.

As NYU's Jonathan Haidt reviewed, "Shields and Dunn have written the authoritative treatise, integrating all previous work in an accessible and fair-minded way, and adding in empathy - the rarely heard voices of conservative professors. All academics should read this book, as should anyone who wants to improve the scholarship, prestige, and public funding of the academy." Even Cornel West added, "Robust and uninhibited intellectual inquiry should be at the center of the American Academy. As a revolutionary Christian I welcome more intense dialogue with my conservative brothers and sisters. This brave book helps us move toward this Socratic condition!"

Presenter, Dr. Jon Shields, is associate professor in the Department of Government at Claremont McKenna College. He is also the author of The Democratic Virtues of the Christian Right (Princeton University Press, 2009). He received his PhD in politics from the University of Virginia and a BA in law and society from the University of California, Santa Barbara. More information.

Panelists include:

Dr. Bradley Campbell, Associate Professor of Sociology, California State University, Los Angeles
Dr. Ted McAllister, Edward L. Gaylord Chair/Associate Professor of Public Policy, Pepperdine University, School of Public Policy
Dr. John Matsusaka, Charles F. Sexton Chair of American Enterprise, University of Southern California, Marshall School of Business
Dr. Gabriel Rossman, associate professor of sociology, University of California, Los Angeles

The panel will be moderated by Pete Peterson, dean, Pepperdine School of Public Policy.