Skip to content Skip to navigation

Mission & Values

The Mission & Values area comprises three Presidential Initiatives, including IDEAL, featured here.

At this pivotal time of immense opportunity and profound societal change, our vision is grounded in both the founding purpose of the University “to promote the public welfare by exercising an influence in behalf of humanity and civilization” and in the following expression of our mission and values.


Research: Extend the frontiers of knowledge, stimulate creativity, and solve real-world problems
Education: Prepare students to think broadly, deeply and critically, and to contribute to the world
Service: Deploy Stanford’s strengths to benefit our region, country and world


Ethics: Anchor education and research in ethics and human welfare
Boldness: Advance our mission boldly but with an eagerness to collaborate and learn from others
Foundations: Stay true to our values, including integrity, diversity, respect, freedom of inquiry and expression, tenacity and optimism

Presidential Initiatives

To put our values into action on campus and in our world, we will launch three Presidential Initiatives which will provide flexible frameworks for resources to amplify existing activities and spark new approaches across our community.

Presidential Initiative on Purposeful Engagement with Our Region, Nation and World

To develop intentional  strategies for service and engagement with our region, nation and world, we will:

  • Service: Expand opportunities for public service and civic engagement for our entire community, building on Cardinal Service.
  • Local: Enhance our local community through the arts, health care, education and athletics; and collaborate with local partners to tackle regional challenges, such as affordability and transportation.
  • National: Engage in problem-solving on the dynamics of the divisions in our nation.
  • Global: Launch a Global Advisory Council of external experts to advise on strategy in collaboration with faculty, building on existing programs.

Discovery team Co-chairs for Regional and National Engagement:

  • Juliet Brodie, Associate Dean for Clinical Education and Professor (Teaching) of Law
  • Marcia Cohen , Senior Associate Dean, Finance and Administration, School of Medicine


  • Barbara Stallins, Senior Director, Alumni Relations
  • Thomas Schnaubelt, Assistant Vice Provost & Executive Director of Haas Center for Public Service
  • Ryan Adesnik, Associate Vice President, Government and Community Relations
  • Priscilla Fiden, Associate Dean for Administration, Graduate School of Education
  • Neil Malhotra, Edith M. Cornell Business Professor and Professor, by courtesy, of Political Science
  • Steve Olson, Sr Associate Dean Finance and Administration, H&S Deans Office
  • Patrick Dunkley, Deputy Athletic Director
  • Chris Lorway, Executive Director, Stanford Live
  • Susan Dackerman, John and Jill Freidenrich Director, Cantor Arts Center
  • Eryn Witcher Tillman, Research Fellow/ Director of Public Affairs
  •  Matthew Wigler, Undergraduate Student, Political & History department
  • Amy Balsom, Senior Associate Dean, School of Earth, Energy and Environmental Sciences


Discovery team Co-chairs for Global Engagement activities:

  • Pamela Hinds, Professor of Management Science and Engineering and Director of the Center on Work, Technology, and Organization
  • Phil Taubman, Senior Advisor for External Affairs


  • Robert Daines, Pritzker Professor of Law and Business and Associate Dean for Global Programs
  • Martin Carnoy, Vida Jacks Professor of Education
  • Joseph Woo, Norman E. Shumway Professor and Professor, by courtesy, of Surgery
  • Hau L.Lee, The Thoma Professor of Operations, Information and Technology
  • Hazel Markus, Davis-Brack Professor in the Behavioral Sciences 

Presidential IDEAL (Inclusion, Diversity, Equity, and Access in a Learning Community) Initiative

To advance our commitment to these foundational values, we will: 

  • Community: Develop a culture that excels at recruiting diverse talent, including: applying best practices to diversify our entire community and creating an outstanding diverse postdoc program; and at fostering an inclusive environment, including new community center support and programs for open exchange of diverse opinions.
  • Access: Continue to diversify our student population through enhanced financial aid for a broad range of students, including low- and middle-income students and international students, and by gradually increasing enrollment of undergraduates.
  • Education: Achieve sustainable change on campus by enhancing onboarding, advising and curricular content to meet the needs of diverse learners, and by ensuring that majors are available to students regardless of incoming preparation.
  • Research: Become a site of scholarship to foster the goals of IDEAL at Stanford and for other learning communities, and improve data transparency to monitor and guide progress.

Project manager:

  • Persis Drell, Provost, James and Anna Marie Spilker Professor and Professor in the School of Engineering, Professor of Materials Science and Engineering and Professor of Physics

Deputy project managers:

  • Harry Elam, Senior Vice Provost for Education, Vice President for the Arts, Freeman-Thornton Vice Provost for Undergraduate Education and the Olive H. Palmer Professor in Humanities
  • Dan Schwartz, Dean of the Graduate School of Education and the Nomellini-Olivier Professor of Educational Technology

University Office & School Representatives:

  • Thomas Fenner, Deputy General Counsel
  • Timothy Warner, Vice Provost for Budget and Auxiliaries Management
  • Chris Bliss, Associate Director, University Affairs Communications
  • Greg Beroza, Wayne Loel Professor
  • Thomas Kenny, Richard W. Weiland Professor and Senior Associate Dean for Student Affairs in the School of Engineering
  • Peter Michelson, Senior Associate Dean for the Natural Sciences and the Luke Blossom Professor in the School of Humanities and Sciences
  • Lanier Anderson, Senior Associate Dean for the Humanities and Arts and J. E. Wallace Sterling Professor of the Humanities
  • Shelley Goldman, Associate Dean for Faculty Affairs and Professor (Teaching) of Education
  • Yvonne A Maldonado, Senior Associate Dean, Faculty Development and Diversity, Professor of Pediatrics (Infectious Diseases) and of Health Research and Policy
  • Rick Banks, The Jackson Eli Reynolds Professor of Law, Associate Dean for Curriculum and Professor, by courtesy, of Education
  • Sarah Soule, Morgridge Professor in the Graduate School of Business, Senior Associate Dean for Academic Affairs and Professor, by courtesy, of Sociology
  • Joshua Rauh, Ormond Family Professor of Finance and Senior Fellow at the Hoover Institution and at the Stanford Institute for Economic Policy Research
  • Joanne Hewett, Professor of Particle Physics and Astrophysics

Design Subgroup Leaders:

  • Patricia Gumport, Vice Provost for Graduate Education and Postdoctoral Affairs and Professor of Education
  • Matthew Snipp, Senior Associate Vice Provost of Faculty Development and Diversity and Burnet C. and Mildred Finley Wohlford Professor in the School of Humanities and Sciences
  • Elizabeth Zacharias, Vice President for Human Resources
  • Richard Shaw, Dean of Admission and Financial Aid
  • Susie Brubaker-Cole, Vice Provost for Student Affairs
  • Karen Cook, Vice Provost for Faculty Development and Diversity and the Ray Lyman Wilbur Professor
  • Stephanie Kalfayan, Vice Provost for Academic Affairs
  • Corrie Potter, Associate Vice Provost and Director of Institutional Research & Decision Support

Project Manager:


Presidential Initiative on Ethics, Society & Technology

To infuse our role in the technology revolution with ethics and societal considerations, we will empower faculty and schools with resources to:

  • Research: Explore societal and ethical consequences of scientific and technological advances (e.g., genome editing, ubiquity of social media, autonomous vehicles) to magnify benefits and minimize downsides.
  • Education: Ensure students are equipped to address societal and ethical impacts of science and technology.

The process to design implementation will be developed after initial focus group sessions with faculty experts. 

Design Team Co-Chairs:

  • Margaret Levi, Director at the Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences (CASBS) and Professor of Political Science
  • Rob Reich, Professor of Political Science and, by courtesy, of Education

Design Team Members:

  • Juliana Bidadanure, Assistant Professor of Philosophy and, by courtesy, of Political Science
  • Scott Sagan, Caroline S. G. Munro Memorial Professor in Political Science and Senior Fellow at the Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies
  • Steven Chu, William R. Kenan Jr. Professor and Professor of Molecular and Cellular Physiology
  •  Tim Stearns, Frank Lee and Carol Hall Professor and Professor of Genetics
  • Jeanne Tsai, Professor of Psychology
  • Michelle Mello, Professor of Law and of Health Research and Policy
  • Nathaniel Persily, James B. McClatchy Professor, Senior Fellow at the Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies and Professor, by courtesy, of Communication and of Political Science
  • Tom Byers, Entrepreneurship Professor in the School of Engineering
  • Michael Bernstein, Assistant Professor of Computer Science
  • Rosamond L Naylor, William Wrigley Professor, Senior Fellow at the Woods Institute for the Environment and at the Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies and Professor, by courtesy, of Economics
  • Ken Shotts, David and Anne Barlow Professor and, Professor, by courtesy, of Political Science
  • David Magnus, Thomas A. Raffin Professor in Medicine and Biomedical Ethics and Professor (Teaching) of Medicine (General Medical Disciplines)
  • David Relman, Thomas C. and Joan M. Merigan Professor and Professor of Microbiology and Immunology