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Globalism and the future of higher education

John Douglass, senior research fellow, Center for Studies in Higher Education | November 20, 2017

(These remarks were delivered at the opening of a Nov. 16-17 conference observing the 60th anniversary of UC Berkeley’s Center for Studies in Higher Education, held in partnership with University World News, and exploring the influence of nationalism on major national universities around the world.) With varying levels of intensity, university are extensions of the … Continue reading »

The dangerous data hack that you won’t even notice

Betsy Cooper, Executive Director, UC Berkeley Center for Long-term Cybersecurity |

A recent wave of cyberattacks — from WannaCry and Equifax to the alleged Russian influence on the U.S. election — has demonstrated how hackers can wreak havoc on our largest institutions. But by focusing only on hackers’ efforts to extort money or mess with our political process, we may have been missing what is potentially … Continue reading »

A fall semester update

Carol Christ, Chancellor | November 16, 2017

As we approach the yearly rituals of the season—the Big Game and the holidays—we have an opportunity to reflect on the fall semester. Free Speech and Community Values The semester was an eventful one, as we tried to balance our commitment to free expression with our values as a community. The discussions and conversations we … Continue reading »

When Cal chose ‘academic stuff’ over college football

Malcolm Potts, professor of population and family planning | October 25, 2017

The proverbial visitor from Mars would surely conclude that the primary purpose of American universities is to promote football and that teaching and research are secondary activities. The coaches are paid more than university presidents and chancellors. The largest and most expensive buildings are to stage football games a few times a year. I am … Continue reading »

Reflections on Las Vegas, and resources for the campus

Carol Christ, Chancellor | October 4, 2017

Like many of you, I am struggling to process the tragedy that unfolded Sunday evening in Las Vegas. The immense loss of life, the hundreds of injuries, the panic on the ground brought to life in video and audio recordings, the renewed acrimony about gun control, and the search for answers all weigh heavily. I extend my deepest … Continue reading »

A time to reflect and move forward together

Carol Christ, Chancellor | September 28, 2017

The past several weeks have been trying ones for Berkeley. In demonstrating our firm commitment to the free speech protections of the First Amendment, this week we have seen speakers come to campus who brought with them ideas that run counter to our Principles of Community and to our belief in the fundamental value of every individual … Continue reading »

Retirement by fiat

Nancy Scheper-Hughes, anthropology professor |

“Farewell Angelina, the sky is on fire and I must be gone.” Now that my fete/festschrift is over, my colleagues here and abroad have posed the obvious question: Why in the world did you retire? But I had threatened to do so for many years. Once in the late 1980s I filed papers for early retirement … Continue reading »

The false media focus on violence: If it bleeds it still leads

Jen Schradie, research fellow at the Institute for Advanced Study in Toulouse | September 7, 2017

On Sunday, August 27, in downtown Berkeley, I witnessed thousands of protesters raising their voices against a planned white supremacist “Patriot Prayer” rally. In my decades as a documentary filmmaker of activism and now an academic studying movements and media, it was one of the most positive, diverse and unifying gatherings I ever experienced. While … Continue reading »

Free speech is who we are

Carol Christ, Chancellor | August 23, 2017

This fall, the issue of free speech will once more engage our community in powerful and complex ways. Events in Charlottesville, with their racism, bigotry, violence and mayhem, make the issue of free speech even more tense. The law is very clear: Public institutions like UC Berkeley must permit speakers invited in accordance with campus … Continue reading »

Back to school, and my priorities

Carol Christ, Chancellor | August 15, 2017

The beginning of the school year is always a magical time for me — a blank sheet of paper, the first page of a novel. You feel the excitement of all the beginnings that surround you — new students embarking on their college or graduate school years, new faculty beginning their Berkeley careers. It was … Continue reading »

My thoughts on Charlottesville

Carol Christ, Chancellor | August 14, 2017

I, like so many of you, am horrified by what occurred in Virginia over the weekend. Today, I join with millions of others to condemn the reprehensible acts of the racist groups that brought violence and mayhem to Charlottesville and to the University of Virginia campus. We must now come together to oppose what are … Continue reading »

110/111: Football, CTE and risk-taking

Malcolm Potts, professor of population and family planning | August 1, 2017

Human beings, like other animals, take risks because in some situations it pays off. We have evolved to value and perhaps even enjoy risk-taking.  My brother-in-law was a famous climber.  A mountain in Antarctica, “Clinch Peak,” honors his name.  Several of his close friends died in climbing accidents. In conversation Nick Clinch would admit that … Continue reading »

Journeys

Carol Christ, Chancellor | July 5, 2017

I’ve been thinking a lot about journeys as I begin my time as chancellor. I still vividly remember the first journey I took to California—across the country by car, the first time I had been west of Philadelphia—to begin my faculty appointment here. It was then, in those first months of teaching, that I fell … Continue reading »

American history: beyond a selective remembrance

john a. powell, director, Haas Institute for a Fair and Inclusive Society |

Yesterday on the Fourth of July, many celebrated U.S. history, or at least part of it, while others were thinking about the many parts we are inclined to ignore. We are a country deeply divided in the way we look at our history. There are some Americans who think “real” Americans are, and always have … Continue reading »

Lessons from the London high-rise fire

Michael O'Hare, professor of public policy | June 16, 2017

Every catastrophe has multiple causes, so there will be lots to learn about this one as the facts come in. Whatever they are, they will include irresponsible, probably corrupt, behavior by people who should have known better.

Why London is safer than Oakland

Malcolm Potts, professor of population and family planning | June 7, 2017

I am glad that next week I will fly to the safety of the United Kingdom. The terrorist attacks in Manchester (22 killed and 119 injured) and London Bridge (7 deaths and 48 injured, some critically) are horrible tragedies and I don’t want to diminish their significance. But for an average individual citizen walking the … Continue reading »

Join us for learning, networking and fun – and sustain the Beahrs Environmental Leadership Program

David Zilberman, professor, agriculture and resource economics | May 4, 2017

The Beahrs Environmental Leadership Program is a three-week summer program that has trained more than 600 professionals, leaders and concerned citizens interested in issues of sustainable development, the environment and natural resources. It provides policy, conflict resolution, climate change, supply chain management, and marketing through interactive learning, group interaction, field trips, and projects. It helps … Continue reading »