Academic freedom: defending democracy in the corporate university

Andrew Miller

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


    Academic freedom is under threat in the Australian university system. The contemporary managerialist university uses numerous tactics to undermine industrial democracy and to subjugate staff. Only fully democratic universities can pursue their missions of free and open enquiry and passionate social debate. Negate academic freedom and you effectively kill the university; and this collapses one of the central pillars of a robust democratic society. The very act of restructuring the university into a ‘corporate monolith’ while diminishing its links with its social and historical values and obligations is a deliberate and calculated act of institutional sabotage.

    The only remedy to this anti-democratic assault is to reclaim the full gamut of academic and intellectual freedom rights, and to enact and deploy these rights throughout the workplace and throughout the sector. Unless staff, students, unions, and community stakeholders wrest back universities from the clutches of corporate interests, universities as we know them will vanish forever.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)14-20
    Number of pages7
    JournalSocial Alternatives
    Issue number3
    Publication statusPublished - Dec 2019


    • Academic freedom
    • Activist scholar
    • Corporate university
    • Freedom of speech


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