UC president recommends Ward Churchill be fired

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[Hank Brown, president of the University of Colorado System] formally recommended that [Ward] Churchill, who has tenure as an ethnic studies professor at Boulder, be fired. In a detailed letter to the Board of Regents, Brown said that Churchill’s violations of academic research norms were too serious and too numerous to ignore — regardless of the circumstances that led to all the scrutiny.

Brown emphatically rejected the idea that First Amendment issues were raised because the inquiries into Churchill started after his comments about 9/11. Brown noted that more than 25 faculty members were involved in formal reviews of a series of research misconduct charges against Churchill, that none of the charges had anything to do with Churchill’s views, and that “each faculty member, without exception, determined that Professor Churchill engaged in deliberate and repeated research misconduct.”

In this context, Brown said it would be wrong to give Churchill a pass because the 9/11 remarks led people to file complaints against him. “The university cannot disregard allegations of serious research misconduct simply because the allegations were made against a professor whose comments have attracted a high degree of public attention,” Brown wrote to the regents. “The prohibition against research misconduct extends to all faculty members, irrespective of their academic disciplines or political views. Were it otherwise, the university could not maintain the integrity of the scholarly enterprise.”

Related Links

  • Inside Higher Ed: Ward Churchill and Academic Freedom

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