Wisconsin’s Fight Over Faculty Rights: What’s at Stake, and What’s Next

June 04, 2015 / Phil Lesch

The Chronicle of Higher Education
June 4th, 2015

Faculty advocates are up in arms over proposed legislation in Wisconsin calling for a sweeping overhaul of the state’s public-university system. The measure, passed by the Legislature’s Joint Committee on Finance as part of negotiations on the state budget, would greatly reduce faculty members’ say in the University of Wisconsin system’s affairs and scrap state laws providing them job protections such as tenure.

Gov. Scott Walker, a Republican who set in motion the effort to overhaul the university system, and the leading Republican lawmakers who back the measure argue that the system needs to become more top-down and nimble to remain competitive. Faculty representatives who oppose the bill argue it will trigger an exodus of talented professors and hinder the system’s efforts to recruit top scholars.

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