MFSA 2024 Conference

MFSA's 2024 Conference

Thursday, September 26, 2024

Following on the success of our 2023 conference, MFSA is excited to host our second annual conference in September 2024. This year's conference will be held during the day on Thursday, September 26, 2024. The conference will be held at Cambridge's Le Meridien hotel. We've purposefully scheduled this year's conference to be held on the eve of MIT's Alumni Leadership Conference on September 27-28 to give returning alumni a chance to take part in our programs and get to know MFSA's work. 

As with our 2023 conference, this year's MFSA Conference will feature a variety of panel discussions and lectures on topics concerning free speech and academic freedom, both at MIT and in higher education more generally, including through the national alumni movement of which MFSA is part. We're delighted to host Harvard University professor Steven Pinker as this year's keynote speaker. Professor Pinker, a co-founder of the Council on Academic Freedom at Harvard, has been among academica's foremost faculty leaders in promoting free inquiry in higher education.

More details on the conference's content and participants will become available during the summer. For information on last year's conference, you can visit the 2023 conference page, and watch the sessions from last year's conference on MFSA's YouTube channel.  

Spaces at our conference are limited to roughly 75 attendees, so if you are interested in attending this year's conference, please email Peter Bonilla, Executive Director, at 

Keynote Speaker: Steven Pinker

Johnstone Professor of Psychology, Harvard University

Steven Pinker is an experimental psychologist who conducts research in visual cognition, psycholinguistics, and social relations. He grew up in Montreal and earned his BA from McGill University and his PhD from Harvard University. Currently Johnstone Professor of Psychology at Harvard University, he was previously the Peter de Florez Professor in the Department of Brain and Cognitive Sciences at MIT, on whose faculty he served from 1982 to 2003. He has won numerous prizes for his research, his teaching, and his books, including The Language InstinctHow the Mind WorksThe Blank SlateThe Better Angels of Our NatureThe Sense of Style, and Enlightenment Now. He is an elected member of the National Academy of Sciences, a two-time Pulitzer Prize finalist, a Humanist of the Year, a recipient of nine honorary doctorates, and one of Foreign Policy’s World’s Top 100 Public Intellectuals and Time’s 100 Most Influential People in the World Today. He was Chair of the Usage Panel of the American Heritage Dictionary, and writes frequently for the New York Times, the Guardian, and other publications. His twelfth book, published in 2021, is called Rationality: What It Is, Why It Seems Scarce, Why It Matters.

Conference Location

Le Méridien Boston Cambridge

Conference Details:

Date: Thursday, September 26, 2024

Time: Roughly 8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m. 


Le Méridien Boston Cambridge

20 Sidney St

Cambridge, MA 02139

A conference itinerary and list of speakers and panelists will be released in summer 2024.