University of Wisconsin, Madison
Donald A. Downs is the Alexander Meiklejohn Emeritus Professor of Political Science, and Emeritus Affiliate Professor of Law and Journalism at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Four of his books won national awards. Downs has written about academic freedom, free speech; campus politics; American politics; political and legal thought and movements; citizenship; domestic violence, psychiatry, and the criminal law; and the relationship among the military, the university, and civic education. His most recent books are The Value and Limits of Academic Speech: Philosophical, Political, and Legal Aspects (Routledge, 2018), Chris W. Surprenant, co-editor; and Free Speech and Liberal Education: A Plea for Intellectual Diversity and Tolerance (Cato, 2020).
He served as secretary and then president of the independent Committee for Academic Freedom and Rights at Wisconsin from 1996-2016 and as faculty adviser to the Open Inquiry Project at the Institute for Humane Studies, 2015-2019. He currently serves on the Academic Affairs Committee of the national Academic Freedom Alliance. In 2013, he won the Jeane Kirkpatrick Academic Freedom Award.