Conversations with History: Institute of International Studies, UC Berkeley

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The Changing Role of University Presidents: Conversation with Harold T. Shapiro, former President of Princeton and of the University of Michigan, March 18, 2003, by Harry Kreisler

This interview is part of the Institute's "Conversations with History" series, and uses Internet technology to share with the public Berkeley's distinction as a global forum for ideas.

Welcome to a Conversation with History. I'm Harry Kreisler of the Institute of International Studies. Our guest today is Harold T. Shapiro, who is Professor of Economics and Public Affairs at Princeton University. From 1987 to 2003, he was President of Princeton University, and from 1980 to 1987, he was President of the University of Michigan. He is the 2003 Clark Kerr Lecturer at the University of California, a lectureship inaugurated this year by the Center for Studies in Higher Education.

  1. Background ... influence of parents ... of uncle ... education ... running a business ... economics
  2. University President ... taking on the challenge ... manager and entrepreneur ... importance of risk-taking ... power of ideas ... partnership ... public vs. private institutions ... balancing internal and external commitments ... preparation and luck ... humility
  3. Universities Today ... differences with the past ... universities smaller ... moral authority of presidents ... changes in the scholarly community ... need to invigorate moral leadership ... defining and articulating interests ... university as servant of society and critic ... the challenge of the war on terrorism ... maintaining openness
  4. Ethics and Biomedical Research ... chairing the President's Commission ... impact of research on cultural narratives ... consequences for the university ... building moral development into the curriculum ... need for scientists to participate in the dialogue ... empathy and humility
  5. Conclusion ... updating the undergraduate curriculum ... advice to students: take charge of your education ... challenge: keeping focused ... educational reform as social protest
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