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A Vision For Stanford

A Purposeful University
Knowledge, Learning & Innovation for a Rapidly Changing World

Since its founding, Stanford has sought and embraced new ways of fulfilling the university’s mission of research, education, and service. In our world today, rapid change is transforming the human experience and posing fundamental questions for humanity. The need to understand this rapidly changing world and to develop solutions for societal challenges has never felt more urgent.

Over the past academic year, Stanford design teams developed recommendations based on ideas that emerged from a campus-wide strategic planning process. These recommendations have been distilled and integrated into a long-range plan, which will launch a series of programs and pilots in the coming year.

The plan is anchored in strategic themes to advance Stanford’s academic mission and to strengthen communities both on campus and beyond. It is premised on the conviction that Stanford is extraordinarily well positioned, with its disciplinary and interdisciplinary strengths, to bring new approaches to addressing the fundamental questions of our time. It reflects the view that advancing knowledge and solutions for society means not just developing technology, but integrating an understanding of attitudes, values, behaviors, cultures, histories, and our capacity for cooperation. It fervently underscores the need to provide strong support for the people in our community, and to advance our mission with integrity and values.

Stanford is ideally placed to interpret and enhance the transformation of the human experience in a rapidly changing world. We have both the opportunity and the responsibility to do so.

Guiding Principles

Foundational to our vision are our guiding principles to:

  • Renew our commitment to Stanford’s founding purpose to promote public welfare by exercising influence on behalf of humanity 
  • Anchor our efforts in integrity, ethics, inclusion, and human welfare 
  • Advance our mission as a research university to serve as a place of enlightenment and freedom of thought and expression

Learn more about the Stanford Vision

Stanford’s vision is anchored in three strategic themes:

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Advancing & Bridging Disciplines

Applying disciplinary expertise and interdisciplinary perspectives to deepen understanding and advance responsible innovation through access to shared and flexible resources
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Building Pathways to Impact

Accelerating the application of knowledge to create transformative solutions that have a real impact in our world
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Strengthening Communities on Campus & Beyond

Supporting an inclusive and collaborative community that inspires learning, enhances lives on campus, and amplifies opportunities to contribute to our world

“A purposeful university promotes and celebrates excellence as a means to magnify its benefit to society.”

Marc Tessier-Lavigne

President