Transparency is accountability. Leaders know this. Opacity is having something to hide, suggestive of shielding a wrongdoing, maybe even taking a hit for someone else.
Perhaps none of the above applies to University of Toronto law school dean Edward Iacobucci, who led the faculty council meeting on Wednesday. Perhaps it does. Inscrutability by definition causes uncertainty.
Yet, if he said it once, the beleaguered dean said a variation of “I will not say more on the matter” at least a dozen times during the hour-long meeting. It was attended by some 75 faculty, students, assistant deans and other staff, many of who were clamouring for transparency on the faculty’s contentious decision to cancel the hiring of a prominent scholar. A recording of the meeting was leaked to the Star.
This university has sparked an international uproar that refuses to abate with new letters pouring in from rights groups and public intellectuals demanding it reveal what may have transpired behind closed doors that led to its abrupt decision to shut out Valentina Azarova, despite her being the unanimous choice of its own hiring committee.