Universities need balance in accepting corporate money

More Canadian institutions will face controversy over the influence of donors on programmes if they do not rethink their relationship with private funders, warn academics who have studied the relationship between donations and educational institutions, writes Simona Chiose for The Globe and Mail.

“In cases where public dollars are declining, universities become dependent on these revenue streams… There is an implicit incentive not to cross the agenda of your funders,” said Christopher Lubienski, a professor in education policy at the University of Illinois who has studied the impact of private think tanks on education.

An independent inquiry will look into recent allegations that Enbridge Inc sought too much influence at a research centre at the University of Calgary that bore its name and to which the energy company initially gave CAD$2.5 million (US$1.88 million). It is the latest in a string of cases over the past decade that have led academics across the country to criticise post-secondary institutions that appear to be willing to share control over their research agenda with private donors.
Full report on The Globe and Mail site