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Michael Schudson is a sociologist (Ph.D. in sociology, Harvard, 1976) by training, a historian in his usual approach to addressing research questions, and a media/communication scholar by the subject matter he usually treats. His books have often focused on the emergence of ideals in different social settings -- how “objectivity” became a cherished ideal in U.S. journalism (Discovering the News, 1978); how the “informed citizen” came to be highly valued in American politics (The Good Citizen, 1998); and how transparency came to be a key objective in U.S. public policy (The Rise of the Right to Know, 2015). He is now pursuing the question of how critical inquiry and open-mindedness came to be valued in higher education. He has been awarded the MacArthur Foundation “genius” fellowship and honorary degrees from the University of Groningen (Netherlands) and Hong Kong Baptist University. Before coming toColumbia University, he taught at the University of Chicago (1976-80) and the University of California, San Diego (1981-2009).