Jim Turk

James L. Turk

Director, Centre for Free Expression”

Previous Positions

Canadian Association of University Teachers – Executive Director 1998 – 2014

Carleton University – Institute of Political Economy – Adjunct Research Professor 2010 – Present

Canadian Union of Public Employees -Executive Assistant to the President 1996-1998

Ontario Federation of Labour – Director of Education 1986-1996

Ontario Council of Regents for Colleges of Applied Arts and Technology – Chair (Acting) 1991

United Electrical Radio and Machine Workers of Canada – Director of Research 1981-1986

University of Toronto – Associate Professor 1975-1989, Assistant Professor 1970-1975


Jay Newman Award for Academic Integrity – University of Guelph Faculty Association, 2013

Peter C. Dooley Legacy Award – University of Saskatchewan Faculty Association, 2014

Distinguished Member Award – Canadian Society for the Study of Higher Education, 2012

Milner Memorial Award, Canadian Association of University Teachers, 2018

PhD — University of Toronto

MA — University of California, Berkeley

A.B. (magna cum laude) — Harvard University

Knox Fellow — Cambridge University

freedom of expression
academic freedom
statutory protection for research confidentiality
legal and organizational basis for effective whistleblower protection
post-secondary education

Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives, Board Member

Canadian Civil Liberties Association

Canadian Journalists for Free Expression

International Civil Liberties Monitoring Group, Steering Committee Member


Turk, James L., ed., Academic Freedom in Conflict: The Struggle over Free Speech Rights in the University. Toronto: James Lorimer & Co., 2014.

Turk, James L., and Charis Wahl, eds., Love, Hope, Optimism: An informal portrait of Jack Layton by those who knew him. Toronto: James Lorimer & Co., 2012.

Turk, James L., ed, Universities at Risk: How Politics, Special Interests and Corporatization Threaten the Integrity of the University. Toronto: James Lorimer & Co, 2008.

Turk, James L. and Manson, Allan. (eds). Free Speech in Fearful Times: After 9/11 in Canada, the U.S., Australia and Europe. Toronto: James Lorimer & Co, 2007.

Bruneau, William and Turk, James L. (eds). Disciplining Dissent: The Curbing of Free Expression in Academia and the Media. Toronto: James Lorimer & Co., 2005.

Turk, James L. (ed). The Corporate Campus: Commercialization and the Dangers to Canada’s Universities and Colleges. Toronto: James Lorimer & Co., 2000.



Turk, James L., “Suppressing Speech Does Not Lead to Social Justice.” Canadian Diversity 14(4): 47-51, 2018.

Turk, James L., “Stripping Academic Freedom from Administrators.” Academe, September-October 2017. http://bit.ly/2fhqDyY

Turk, James L. and Stewart, Penni, “Safe for What: Universities and the Controversy over Safe Spaces.” Centre for Free Expression, Occasional Papers Series, July 7, 2017.  https://cfe.ryerson.ca/sites/default/files/Turk_Stewart_Safe_Spaces_2017_07_07.pdf

Turk, James L., “The Landscape of the Contemporary University” Canadian Journal of Communication 42(2017): 3-12, http://www.cjc-online.ca/index.php/journal/article/view/3202/3319

Turk, James L., “University Debased” Alberta Views, September 1, 2016,


Turk, James L., “Canadian Research -A Fresh Start?” International Innovation, January 2016.     http://www.internationalinnovation.com/canadian-research-fresh-start/

Turk, James L., “A Chance to Get Science Right” Science 9, October 2015: 139.

Turk, James L., “Science Under Siege.” In Canada After Harper, edited by Ed Finn, 322-346. Toronto: James Lorimer & Co., 2015.

Guyatt, Gordon H., Cass, Carol E., Jackson, Alan C., Smith, Derryck H., Welch, J. Philip and Turk, James L. Protecting Academic Freedom. Open Medicine, 2: (2008).  http://www.openmedicine.ca/article/viewArticle/14/130

Catano, Victor M.  and Turk, James L. (2007). Fraud and misconduct in scientific research: a definition and procedures for investigation. Med Law, 26:3 (2007): 465-76.



Presentations (Selected 2012-2018)

Turk, James L., “Censorship Undermines Social Justice.” Mount Royal University, Calgary. February 9, 2018.

Turk, James L., “Is There Room for Academic Freedom in Today’s University?” Mount Royal University, Calgary. February 8, 2018.

Turk, James L., “Is There a Place for Censorship in Libraries and Universities?” Ontario Library Association SuperConference, Toronto. February 1, 2018.

Turk, James L., “Who Can I Say What? Censorship and Free Speech in the University.” Centre for Constitutional Studies, University of Alberta Law School, Edmonton. January 23, 2018.

Turk, James L., “The Controversy Over Campus Free Expression.” OISE/UT, Toronto. November 23, 2017.

Turk, James L., “Words Matter: Freedom of Expression, Hate Speech, and Academic Freedom in the University” Social Justice Week Forum, Ryerson University, Toronto.  October 25, 2017

Turk, James L., “Suppressing Speech Is Not the Route to Social Justice.” Ryerson University Conference: The Many Gods of Canada: Religion, Secularism and Public Policy. Toronto. October 19, 2017.

Turk, James L., “Academic Freedom Worldwide: The Importance of the UNESCO Recommendation on he Status of Higher Education Teaching Personnel.” UNESCO Forum – World Teachers Day, Paris. October 5, 2017.

Turk, James L., “Campus Free Speech.” Council of Ontario Universities Academic Associates. Toronto, August 22, 2018

Turk, James L., “Protecting Intellectual Freedom.” Canadian Federation of Library Associations National Forum. Regina, May 2, 2018.

Turk, James L., “Researcher-Participant Privilege: Hanging by a Thread.” Canadian Association of Research Ethics Boards National Conference, Halifax. April 28, 2017.

Turk, James L., “Civility and Incivility in Academia: Academic Freedom, Expressive Speech & Misconduct.”  Jointly sponsored by University of Manitoba, University of Winnipeg and Brandon University. April 13, 2017.

Turk, James L., “Under Attack from All Sides: Freedom of Expression, Academic Freedom and the Future of the
University.” University of Wisconsin – Stout, March 27, 2017.

Turk, James L., “Rescuing Collegial Governance.” Laurentian University, March 16, 2017.

Turk, James L., “Seizing the Opportunity: Getting Better Rights and Protections.” University of Alberta, February 8, 2017.

Turk, James L., “Universities Must Be Safe Spaces for Free Expression.” Chang School, Ryerson University, January 18, 2017.

Turk, James L., “Requisites for Good Post-Secondary Labour Relations Law.” University of Alberta, November 2, 2016.

Turk, James L., “Academic Freedom and University Boards of Governors.” Ryerson University Board of Governors, November 1, 2016.

Turk, James L., “Unsafe and Unsound: Codes of Conduct Threaten Academic Freedom, Free Expression & the Academic Mission.” Northern Ontario School of Medicine. April 18, 2016.

Turk, James L., “Academic Freedom.” Annual Meeting of Chairs, Deans and Directors, Ryerson University. April 14, 2016.

Turk, James L., “Undermining Academic Freedom: Precarity, Duty, Surveillance & Civility.” University of Alberta, November 5, 2015.

Turk, James L., “Whither University Governance.” Kwantlen Polytechnic University, August 27, 2015.

Turk, James L., “Silencing the Academy: Academic freedom and the future of university governance.” Dalhousie University. Halifax, Nova Scotia. March 24, 2015.

Turk, James L., “What Is an Art College without Academic Freedom?” Alberta College of Art and Design. Calgary, Alberta. March 12, 2015.

Turk, James L. “Research and Science in Canada Are in Danger.” SRC Seminar, Department of Politics and Public Administration. Ryerson University. Toronto. March 5, 2015.

Turk, James L., “What’s All the Fuss about Program Prioritization?” Wilfrid Laurier University. November 27, 2014.

Turk, James L., “’You can’t say that’: Enforced civility as a threat to academic freedom and freedom of expression.” Ryerson University. Toronto, Ontario. November 13, 2014

Turk, James L., “Public Science under Siege: Past, present and a vision for the future.” Professional Institute of the Public Service of Canada. National Research Council. Ottawa, Ontario. November 6, 2014.

Turk, James L., “Civility, Precarity and the Demise of Academic Freedom.” Brock University. St. Catharine’s Ontario. October 30, 2014.

Turk, James L. “Should universities and colleges be run like Walmart?” Ryerson University Social Justice Week Talks. Toronto, October 7, 2014.

Turk, James L., “An Inconvenient Symbol: Academic freedom in the 21st century university.” Keynote address. Academic Freedom Conference. University of Saskatchewan, Saskatoon. October 1, 2014.

Turk, James L., “Limiting Academic Research.” Graduate Student Association Colloquium. University of Saskatchewan, Saskatoon. September 30, 2014.

Turk, James L. “Science Under Siege.” Joint session of the Canadian Association of Professional Academic Librarians, Canadian Population Society, Canadian Society for the History and Philosophy of Science, Canadian Society for the Study of Education, and Canadian Sociological Association at the Congress for the Federation for the Humanities and Social Sciences. St. Catharines, Ontario May 27, 2014.

Turk, James L., “The Future of the University and How We Can Shape It.” Mount Royal University, May 12, 2014

Turk, James L. “The Remaking of the University” Ryerson University, Toronto. April 4, 2014

Turk, James L. “Academic Freedom.” University of Regina Academic Freedom Forum, March 27, 2014

Turk, James L. “Community-University Research.” Faculty of Public Affairs, Carleton University. March 17, 2014

Turk, James L. “More of the Story: Silence of the Labs and the undermining of science in Canada.” Science for Peace. University of Toronto, March 3, 2014

Turk, James L. “Protecting Academic Integrity When Universities Collaborate with Industry.” Centre for Policy Studies in Higher Education and Training, University of British Columbia, February 25, 2014.

Turk, James L. “Danger of Outsourcing to U.S.-Linked Corporations.” Privacy Colloquium. University of Waterloo. December 4, 2013

Turk, James L. “Putting Academics at Risk: University outsourcing of email and electronic services.” Faculty of Information. University of Toronto. November 16, 2013

Turk, James L. “Challenges Facing Post-Secondary Educators in Canada.” Mount Royal University. September 25, 2013

Turk, James L. “What’s the Big Deal about Academic Freedom.” Ontario Public Service Employees Union 2nd Annual College Faculty Symposium. Toronto. June 7, 2013

Turk, James L. “Austerity in Post-Secondary education: What’s being done to research.” Queen’s University, Kingston. April 11, 2013

Turk, James L., “What’s Happening to Research Funding in Canada. Simon Fraser University. March 25, 2013

Turk, James L. “The Future of Research in Canada.” Graduate Students Association. York University. February 28, 2013.

Turk, James L. “Outsourcing to Google: A Bad Deal for York Academic Staff.” York University. Toronto. February 5, 2013.

Turk, James L. “What Is Academic Freedom.”  Canadian Association of University Business Officers’ Annual Workshop. Toronto. November 9, 2012.

Turk, James L. “The Foundation of Real Universities.” Thompson Rivers University, Kamloops, B.C., October 18, 2012.

Turk, James L. “Perspectives on Academic Freedom.” University of Waterloo. September 6, 2012.

Turk, James L. “Academic Librarianship Under Attack: From Babbage to Kroc.” Simon Fraser University. Vancouver, May 4, 2012.

Turk, James L. “The Rhetoric, the Reality and the Price of University Accreditation in the United States.” Simon Fraser University. Burnaby, B.C., March 29, 2012.