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Table of Contents

Faculty Network Videos

Research & Learn

Learn more about the FIREFaculty Network and hear from our staff of First Amendment experts by watching our faculty webinar series.

FIREFaculty webinar screenshot with Pippa Norris Jon Shields and Eric Kaufmann

Should universities recruit conservatives to increase viewpoint diversity?

Professors Pippa Norris, Jon Shields, and Eric Kaufmann debate whether universities should actively recruit and hire conservatives to increase viewpoint diversity. 

University of Pennsylvania professors Jonathan Zimmerman and Amy Wax at the FIREFaculty Network Webinar in March 2024

How appropriate are curricular constraints on K-12 and/or higher education?

University of Pennsylvania professors Jonathan Zimmerman and Amy Wax will debate what — if any — state actions are appropriate responses. Professors Wax and Zimmerman will present their arguments, and discuss topics such as the Stop WOKE Act and the DEI requirements in California.

College student with a backpack walking down a hallway.

2024 College Free Speech Rankings Webinar

Free speech as a principle has never been more contested on American campuses than it is today. From canceled speakers to speech-chilling policies, learn which institutions have improved — and which have only gotten worse. ֭'s research experts — Adam Goldstein, Sean Stevens, and Nathan Honeycutt, dive into the rankings, and why they matter.

FIREin a classroom raising their hands

Academic Freedom is Under Attack: Learn how you can defend it

FIREFaculty Webinar

This webinar featured Amna Khalid, associate professor of history at Carleton College, Codi Lazar, steering committee member of the CSU Faculty for Academic Freedom, Flynn Cratty, executive director of the Harvard Council of Academic Freedom, and Adam Steinbaugh, FIREattorney. The panelists discussed how they are rising up at Ivy League institutions, state university systems, small liberal arts colleges, and beyond to protect one of higher education’s most important principles: academic freedom. This event was organized by Connor Murnane, Director of Engagement and Mobilization, and Komi Frey, Director of Faculty Outreach, and was recorded on June 7, 2023.

Amy Wax attends FIREFaculty Network webinar

Amy Wax and the Limits of Academic Freedom

FIREFaculty Webinar

During this webinar, University of Pennsylvania law professor Amy Wax detailed various allegations, particularly those involving in-person comments, and explained why she believes none warrant the disciplinary proceedings being led by Dean Theodore Ruger. She also warned that if Dean Ruger succeeds, the consequences for academic freedom at Penn, and nationwide, will be dire. Jonathan Zimmerman, Judy and Howard Berkowitz Professor in Education at the University of Pennsylvania, joined the conversation. This event was moderated by Komi Frey, Director of Faculty Outreach, and was recorded on April 13, 2023.

The Academic Mind in 2022 Ft. Nathan Honeycutt and Sean Stevens

The Academic Mind in 2022 Ft. Nathan Honeycutt and Sean Stevens

FIREFaculty Webinar

In this webinar, “The Academic Mind in 2022,” ֭'s Nathan Honeycutt and Sean Stevens discuss the results of ֭’s nationwide survey of nearly 1,500 faculty’s attitudes toward free expression and academic freedom. The full report is here: The Academic Mind in 2022: What Faculty Think About Free Expression and Academic Freedom on Campus. This discussion was moderated by Komi Frey, Director of Faculty Outreach, and was recorded on March 21, 2023.

Forbidden Findings Faculty Webinar

Forbidden Findings Ft. Tim Shiell, April Bleske-Rechek, and Eric Giordano

FIREFaculty Webinar

Our guests — Tim Shiell, April Bleske-Rechek, and Eric Giordano — are three faculty at various University of Wisconsin campuses who attempted to collaborate on a system-wide study of free speech attitudes, but were met with pushback from students and administrative leaders whose censorious actions demonstrated the precise problem the faculty wished to study. Fortunately, Shiell, Bleske-Rechek, and Giordano prevailed! During this webinar, we discussed the extensive report on their findings.

This discussion was moderated by Komi Frey, Director of Faculty Outreach, and was recorded on March 2, 2023.

Professors Brian Leiter and Brian Soucek

DEI Statements and Academic Freedom Ft. Brian Leiter and Brian Soucek

FIREFaculty Webinar

Brian Leiter, Karl N. Llewellyn Professor of Jurisprudence at the University of Chicago, argued that DEI statements undermine academic freedom.

Brian Soucek, Professor of Law and Chancellor’s Fellow at the University of California, Davis, argued that the statements need not undermine academic freedom, if done properly.

This debate was moderated by Komi Frey, Director of Faculty Outreach, and was recorded on February 7, 2023.

Promoting Free Expression on Your Campus (And Why You Should)

FIREFaculty Webinar

FIRE Vice President of Student Outreach Molly Nocheck joins University of Wisconsin-Stout Professor Tim Shiell and University of Wisconsin-La Crosse professor James Szymalak for a discussion on how to effectively advocate for free expression on campus, and how students and faculty can work together in pursuit of this common goal. This discussion was recorded September 28, 2022.

journalist working on laptop

Faculty and Public Records Laws Webinar

Faculty and Public Records Laws

FIREFaculty Webinar

Erin Coyle, associate professor of journalism at Temple University, and Zach Greenberg, senior program officer with Campus Rights Advocacy, joined this faculty webinar for a discussion of the intersection of public records laws and higher education. Topics discussed include the basics of public records laws, how professors can utilize public records laws in their work and research, and how professors can respond if they find their records targeted. This webinar was recorded on March 22, 2022. 

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2021 Year in Review Webinar

2021 Year in Review

FIREFaculty Webinar

Aaron Terr, an attorney and program officer with Campus Rights Advocacy, joined this Faculty Network webinar for a discussion of ֭’s work defending individual faculty rights in 2021. The discussion covers some of the major issues and trends FIREencounters, what we expect to see in 2022, and how faculty can be prepared to defend their rights. This webinar was recorded on January 27, 2022.

2022 College Free Speech Rankings

College Free Speech Rankings Webinar

College Free Speech Rankings 

FIREFaculty Webinar

Sean Stevens, ֭’s senior research fellow for polling and analytics, joins ֭’s Faculty Network webinar for a discussion of ֭’s 2021 College Free Speech Rankings, which ranks the climate for free expression at more than 150 institutions. The webinar provides an in-depth review of the survey’s methodology and key findings, discusses how ֭’s free speech rankings have evolved since our first report was issued in 2020, and discusses possible future lines of research that can be explored from the survey’s data. The webinar was recorded on November 9, 2021.

 

Scholars Under Fire

Scholars Under Fire Webinar

Scholars Under Fire

FIREFaculty Webinar

FIRE Research Fellow Komi German joins FIREVice President of Programs Peter Bonilla for a discussion of our new “Scholars Under Fire” report, which analyzes more than 400 campaigns to get professors sanctioned for their expression at campuses around the country. Komi and Peter also fielded questions from faculty about the report, which documents the ways and reasons that scholars have faced calls for sanction; how scholars and administrators have responded to different forms of targeting; and what (if any) sanctions scholars faced in response to targeting incidents occurring from 2015 to the present. This webinar was recorded on September 16, 2021.

Scholars Under Fire Report

Faculty Legal Defense Fund

Faculty Legal Defense Fund Webinar

֭’s New Faculty Legal Defense Fund

FIREFaculty Webinar

In this FIREFaculty Network webinar, we discuss ֭’s new Faculty Legal Defense Fund, which will provide free legal services to faculty at public institutions who need assistance navigating challenges to their First Amendment rights. Joining the webinar are Ronnie London, director of ֭’s Faculty Legal Defense Fund, and professor Phillip Beverly, a plaintiff from ֭’s Stand Up For Speech Litigation Project lawsuit at Chicago State University. With Peter Bonilla, vice president of programs at ֭, the panelists discuss the workings of ֭’s new defense fund, discuss the experience of engaging in litigation against one’s institution, and take questions from participants. The webinar was recorded on April 27, 2021.

Press Release: FIREto launch Faculty Legal Defense Fund

Legislating Academic Freedom

FIREFaculty Webinar

In this webinar, FIREVice President of Programs Peter Bonilla hosts Joe Cohn, ֭’s legislative and policy director; and professor Donald Downs, professor emeritus of political science at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, for a discussion of the current legislative climate for free speech and academic freedom. We discuss a number of different legislative proposals at state legislatures around the country — including bills that would mandate viewpoint diversity at public universities and would target the use of critical race theory in institutional programming — while also discussing larger lessons and insights that can be taken from various conflicts between government and academia over the years. This discussion was recorded on March 16, 2021.

Legislative efforts to address teachings on race pose threats to academic freedom

Legislative interference in the classroom threatens academic freedom

The Chicago Statement: What Have We Learned?

The Chicago Statement: What Have We Learned?

FIREFaculty Webinar

In this webinar, FIREVice President of Programs Peter Bonilla and Senior Program Officer Mary Zoeller discuss ֭'s work advocating for the “Chicago Statement,” which has been adopted at dozens of institutions nationwide following its establishment at the University of Chicago in 2015. We're also joined by Georgetown University professor John Hasnas, who helped pass a version of the Chicago Statement at his institution, and Leila Brammer, director of the Parrhesia Program for Public Discourse at the University of Chicago, an undergraduate program rooted in the Chicago Statement's principles.

Five years of the 'Chicago Statement': What have we learned?

Faculty speech and academia

Defending and Protecting Faculty Rights Webinar

Defending and Protecting Faculty Rights 

FIREFaculty Webinar

Adam Steinbaugh, director of ֭'s Campus Rights Advocacy team, joined Vice President of Programs Peter Bonilla for a discussion of ֭'s case investigation and public advocacy process. He describes recent trends in campus free speech controversies, including factors that resulted in FIREreceiving the most case submissions in its history in 2020. This discussion was recorded on November 20, 2020.

 

This has been ֭s busiest summer ever. What happened?

Amidst ֭s record-breaking summer, demands to terminate faculty went mainstream

Free Speech Rankings cover image

Free Speech Rankings Webinar

University Rankings for Free Expression 

Faculty Network Webinar

FIRE Senior Research Fellow Sean Stevens joins Vice President of Programs Peter Bonilla to discuss ֭'s rankings of the climate for free expression at 55 institutions around the United States and takes questions from Faculty Network members. “2020 College Free Speech Rankings: What’s the Climate for Free Speech on America’s College Campuses?” features the opinions of roughly 20,000 students, making it the largest free speech survey of college students ever performed. It scores institutions on openness to opposing viewpoints, the climate for self-expression, administrative support of free speech, and campus expression policies. This discussion was recorded on October 20, 2020.

Largest ever free speech survey of college students ranks top campuses for expression

Title IX Regulations

Title IX Webinar

Title IX

FIREFaculty Webinar

FIRE Executive Director Robert Shibley, Senior Fellow Samantha Harris, and Legislative and Policy Director Joe Cohn discuss the Department of Education's new Title IX regulations on sexual misconduct and due process in campus judicial proceedings. This webinar was recorded on September 23, 2020.

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