Higher education’s focus on sustainability seriously undermines free inquiry and debate on college campuses, a new report from the National Association of Scholars argues. The report, entitled “Sustainability: Higher Education’s New Fundamentalism,” also argues that colleges’ sustainability efforts are too costly at a time when graduates are struggling to pay off loan debt.
The association has in the past assailed sustainability, sexual permissiveness, and attempts to increase diversity on campuses, among other things. “Harnessing higher education into the service of sustainability seriously undermines its purpose,” write the report’s co-authors, Peter W. Wood, the association’s president, and Rachelle Peterson, a research associate. “It treats other disciplines as mere material for sustainability to interpret or vehicles by which sustainability can be taught.”