This Week on The Scene: Risa Lieberwitz discusses “Make Cornell Pay” and Academic Freedom

On October 4th, 2023, a group of Cornell faculty condemned Cornell University’s proposed “payment in lieu of taxes” to the City of Ithaca for falling grievously short of Cornell’s obligations to the public interest. In this week’s episode of The Scene, Risa Lieberwitz, a professor at Cornell’s Industrial and Labor Relations School, places the MakeCornellPay campaign in the broader context of her analysis of the role of higher education in a democratic society, and how it has been weakened by the privatization of the university. Professor Lieberwitz also discusses the role of academic freedom in permitting faculty and student organizing around issues like MakeCornellPay and her work with the American Association of University Professors (AAUP) in defending academic freedom.