Why and How We Should Choose Civility in Academic Workplaces
A positive and productive departmental climate can often seem like love. We might admire it from afar and wish we had that luck, although we can learn to cope by developing a hobby, lowering our expectations, or cultivating other relationships. We might blame our current unhappiness on our own mates…
With the spate of books and articles that deal with the issue of incivility in higher education, it’s easy to conclude that destructive disharmony is the single biggest problem facing colleges and universities today. To be sure, lack of collegiality has become a significant challenge, and nearly every academic leader can recall at least one department or college that became increasingly dysfunctional because of its inability to work together in a mutually supportive manner. But the great deal of attention we pay to the challenges of incivility can cause us to underestimate the dangers of an opposing threat that also exists in many academic units: groupthink.