Global Survey of Academic Freedom Issues in 2015 [Post 6 of a Series]

 

Canada—Additional Items

In May, in an incident not covered in O’Kane’s survey, the president and provost of the University of Saskatchewan were forced out of their positions after they fired a dean for being openly critical of their cost-cutting plans. The dean, Robert Buckingham, was also a tenured professor, and the outcry by faculty and students over his abrupt termination led to the resignation of Provost Brett Fairbairn and the firing of President Ilene Busch-Vishniac. A news report on her firing in Saskatoon’s Star Phoenix notes that her being “fired without cause” represented “an unprecedented move for a Canadian university” (Hill). An interim president was named, and Buckingham was re-instated to his faculty position. But the university “never launched an independent or public investigation into the events that ended Busch-Vishniac’s and Fairbairn’s leadership careers, [and] both continue to work at the university as professors” (Hill).

____________________

In April, the provincial government of Nova Scotia considered a bill called the Universities Accountability and Sustainability Act, which would allow “the minister to ask for financial statements and to verify the sustainability of a university’s financial operations” and “allow universities that face severe financial difficulties to implement revitalization plans that suspend collective agreements and ban strikes for up to 18 months” (Chiose). Although the universities in the province were facing millions of dollars in deficits, critics argued that the bill was “unconstitutional, [infringed] on institutions’ autonomy, and [violated] academic freedom” (Chiose). Catrina Brown, president of the Dalhousie Faculty Association, stated: “’If research and scholarly work need to be in line with the strategic direction, socially and economically of a government, that interferes with what is known as academic freedom’” (Chiose).

____________________

Chiose, Simona. “Cash-Strapped Schools Could Ban Strikes with New Bill.” Globe and Mail [British Columbia Edition] 30 Apr. 2015: A, 6.

Hill, Andrea. “Firings ‘Bumps in the Road’: Barnhart.” Star-Phoenix [Saskatoon, Saskatchewan] 21 May 2015: A, 4.

____________________

Robert Buckingham

Robert Buckingham

Brett Fairbairn

Brett Fairbairn

Ilene Busch-Vishniac

Ilene Busch-Vishniac

Catrina Brown

Catrina Brown

____________________

Previous Posts in the Series:

Post 1. Canada—University of British Columbia [Part 1]: https://academeblog.org/2016/04/24/global-survey-of-academic-freedom-issues-in-2015-post-1-of-a-series/.

Post 2. Canada—University of British Columbia [Part 2]: https://academeblog.org/2016/04/25/global-survey-of-academic-freedom-issues-in-2015-post-2-of-a-series/.

Post 3. Canada—University of New Brunswick: https://academeblog.org/2016/04/26/global-survey-of-academic-freedom-issues-in-2015-post-3-of-a-series/.

Post 4. Canada—Capilano University: https://academeblog.org/2016/04/30/global-survey-of-academic-freedom-issues-in-2015-post-4-of-a-series/

Post 5. Canada—Overview: https://academeblog.org/2016/05/05/global-survey-of-academic-freedom-issues-in-2015-post-5-of-a-series/

 

 

6 thoughts on “Global Survey of Academic Freedom Issues in 2015 [Post 6 of a Series]

  1. Pingback: Global Survey of Academic Freedom Issues in 2015 [Post 7 of a Series] | ACADEME BLOG

  2. Pingback: Global Survey of Academic Freedom Issues in 2015 [Post 8 of a Series] | ACADEME BLOG

  3. Pingback: Global Survey of Academic Freedom Issues in 2015 [Post 9 of a Series] | ACADEME BLOG

  4. Pingback: Global Survey of Academic Freedom Issues in 2015: United Kingdom, Part 1 [Post 10 of a Series] | ACADEME BLOG

  5. Pingback: Global Survey of Academic Freedom Issues in 2015: United Kingdom, Part 2 [Post 11 of a Series] | ACADEME BLOG

Your comments are welcome. They must be relevant to the topic at hand and must not contain advertisements, degrade others, or violate laws or considerations of privacy. We encourage the use of your real name, but do not prohibit pseudonyms as long as you don't impersonate a real person.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s