Academic & Professional Organizations

For nearly a decade, BDS activists have concentrated some of their major energies on efforts to get academic and professional organizations to pass resolutions endorsing and initiating organization-wide boycotts of Israeli universities or divestment from companies doing business in Israel. Several small faculty organizations have endorsed academic boycotts, though the larger and more central disciplines have as of 2016 so far defeated those proposals. But the struggle continues, often with boycott resolutions being put forward year after year. The resources section of Israel and the Academy includes fliers, op eds, and essays addressing the principles at stake in these efforts. Here we document the boycott battles themselves. In addition to highlighting current campaigns, the site archives key documents from previous struggles. Those archives will be useful to those facing renewed battles in their groups.



Since 2002, boycott advocates have steadily mounted campus campaigns to convince students to vote for resolutions urging administrators and regents or boards of trustees to divest from (sell their stock in) companies doing business in Israel. Some faculty members have also played a role in promoting divestment. On campuses where such resolutions have been approved, administrators and representatives of governing bodies have consistently made it clear they will not abandon their fiduciary responsibilities and let students make these decisions for them. But these highly contentious debates divide campuses and regularly turn some students and faculty into opponents of the Jewish state. These students graduate and become professionals, business people, religious leaders, and politicians; thus the campus campaigns have long-term social and political implications. Israel and the Academy does not aim to cover every campus campaign but rather to document key examples, though we are open to adding examples when faculty gather the relevant records. In addition to covering divestment campaigns, we document examples of collateral campus controversies.