Event will bring high-profile guests to campus to discuss current state of free expression, civil discourse
Vanderbilt will hold a series of high-profile events Oct. 10–17 in observance of the university’s first-ever campus-wide Free Speech Week, part of Chancellor Daniel Diermeier’s recently launched Dialogue Vanderbilt initiative.
Programming highlights include well-known journalist, editor and columnist for the New York Times, Bret Stephens, in conversation with Samar Ali, Vanderbilt research professor of political science and law, for a discussion centered around the values of free expression, open debate and civil discourse through the lens of some of the most pressing issues we face today.
In partnership with Jacob Mchangama and The Future of Free Speech Project, the university will host the Symposium on AI, Free Speech and Human Rights, an event to explore the dynamic intersection of generative AI, free speech and human rights within the rapidly evolving landscape of artificial intelligence advancements. The symposium will bring together thought leaders, researchers, activists and industry professionals from around the world, including keynote speaker Max Tegmark, Massachusetts Institute of Technology professor of physics.
“Free speech is a bedrock Vanderbilt value. It is fundamental to our purpose of providing transformative education and pathbreaking research,” Diermeier said. “We’re proud to mark Free Speech Week by continuing our longstanding tradition of bringing people of differing viewpoints together to debate—and ultimately help solve—the societal problems that matter most.”
As part of Vanderbilt’s commitment to free expression, Dialogue Vanderbilt provides a range of programs to students, faculty and the public to promote civil discourse and to better understand and address polarization.
Vanderbilt’s 2023 Free Speech Week activities are as follows. Get the event details and register to attend.
Tuesday, Oct. 10 – Open Dialogue Visiting Fellows Event with Jenn Carlson: Safer Catch? Gun Sellers and the Crisis of American Democracy
4 p.m., Wilson Hall, Room 126
This event will focus on the shifting role of guns on college campuses. Jenn Carlson is a 2022 MacArthur Fellow and an NRA-certified gun instructor as well as an ethnographer of gun carriers, trainers and advocates.
Wednesday, Oct. 11 – Undergraduate Pre-Event for the Symposium on AI, Free Speech and Human Rights presented by The Future of Free Speech Project
6:30 p.m., The Wond’ry, Vanderbilt’s Innovation Center
In association with the 2023 Symposium on AI, Free Speech and Human Rights and presented by The Future of Free Speech Project, this event will chart the past, present and future of the ethical and societal implications of AI, as told by academic and industry experts and undergraduate students.
Thursday, Oct. 12–Friday, Oct. 13 – Symposium on AI, Free Speech and Human Rights
Live stream will begin on Thursday at 9 a.m. on the symposium website
The Future of Free Speech Project, in partnership with Vanderbilt University, will host an event to explore the dynamic intersection of generative AI, free speech and human rights within the rapidly evolving landscape of artificial intelligence advancements.
Friday, Oct. 13 – Family Weekend Conversation with the Chancellor
3 p.m., Student Life Center Ballroom
Join Chancellor Daniel Diermeier, Provost and Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs C. Cybele Raver and other university leaders for a conversation about the university, with opportunities to ask questions and gain a greater understanding of Vanderbilt’s priorities, including the Dialogue Vanderbilt initiative.
Monday, Oct. 16 – A Conversation Hosted by Dialogue Vanderbilt: Bret Stephens in Discussion with Samar Ali
5:30 p.m., Rothschild College, Black Box Theater
Bret Stephens, a well-known journalist, editor and columnist for the New York Times, will join Samar Ali, research professor of political science and law at Vanderbilt, for a discussion hosted by Chancellor Daniel Diermeier centered around the values of free expression, open debate and civil discourse through the lens of some of the most- pressing issues we face today.
Tuesday, Oct. 17 – Unity Project Lunch and Learn
12:30 p.m., Central Library, Room 200
The Vanderbilt Project on Unity and American Democracy is working to expand the dialogue of learning outside the classroom through this ongoing series. The Free Speech Week Lunch and Learn will explore First Amendment issues here in Tennessee with American Civil Liberties Union of Tennessee Director Kathy Sinback.