The Idea of a University

The Idea of a University
Apr 19, 2019 6:00 PM Ahmedabad University, Auditorium, GICT Building, Central Campus Events

Ahmedabad University organised a discussion on 19th April 2019 around academic freedom in Indian universities based on the recently launched book The Idea of a University. Professor Apoorvanand from the University of Delhi was in conversation with Professor Rakesh Basant from the Indian Institute of Management Ahmedabad, and Professors Pankaj Chandra and Payel Chattopadhyay Mukherjee from Ahmedabad University. Professor Pankaj Chandra led the discussions which revolved around the concept of a university and its relevance in contemporary times. Professor Apporvanand stressed the relevance of the university as safe spaces for freedom of expression and articulated the challenges to the idea of a university in practice within the current trends of disruptive socio-political conditions. Tracing the ideas of the university in the thought threads of Tagore, Newman, and Humboldt, Payel C Mukherjee emphasised the social responsibility of a university and the crisis of credibility that academia has been experiencing in the face of complex cultural reformations. Professor Basant argued about the possibilities of exercising academic freedom within institutions suited to the purpose of pursuing excellence. The panel received an enthusiastic response from the audience and indulged in rigorous dialogues, thereafter debating and reanalysing the notion of the university in the Indian scenario.


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