I ask this as JP remains an activist to his core as completely befits someone who a founder of Forum for the Future, and chair of the Sustainable Development Commission. It's just that English universities don't usually appoint such splendidly awkward folk to these supposedly ceremonial roles, and it will be compelling to watch how this dynamic plays out, especially amongst some of Keele's no-doubt, equally-awkward academics.
In a recent article for the Guardian, JP writes:
"Through my years at Forum for the Future we have always emphasised the critical role that the higher education sector can play in helping to bring sustainable activities into mainstream society. This encompasses how those institutions are managed, how they engage with their local communities and what is taught in higher education. In short, they are uniquely placed to effect change in terms of the campus, the community and the curriculum."
So far, so mainstream, but in a sharper line, he argues that:
"we should be preparing students for the work of the world, not just the world of work"
Whilst it's hard to gainsay such a global citizenly focus (and I certainly don't), there's plenty to talk and disagree about when we get down to the what and the how of it all, and distinctions between could and ought. Fun days out in Stoke, it seems.
The full article is here.