The 8th President of the University of Pennsylvania, Amy Gutmann is an internationally recognized leader in higher education. Since becoming president in 2004, she has been an outspoken advocate for increased access to higher education, and has led Penn to become the largest university to establish an all-grant policy for all undergraduate students who qualify for financial aid. A first-generation college student herself, President Gutmann has significantly expanded the number of students from low-income, middle-income, and first-generation college families attending the University. She has pushed Penn to the forefront in civic engagement, as exemplified by the 2011 opening of Penn Park, a 24-acre urban oasis connecting the Penn campus to Center City Philadelphia and surrounding neighborhoods.
Under her leadership, Penn completed its largest, most successful fundraising effort in 2013, raising $4.3 billion through the Making History campaign. At the same time, the University has uniquely bridged academic disciplines by creating Penn Integrates Knowledge (PIK) University Professorships and new interdisciplinary majors and programs that span Penn’s twelve schools, invigorating the intellectual climate for both faculty and students.
Dr. Gutmann is the Christopher H. Browne Distinguished Professor of Political Science and Professor of Communication in the Annenberg School for Communication, with secondary faculty appointments in Philosophy in the School of Arts and Sciences and the Graduate School of Education. She has published widely on the value of education and deliberation in democracy, on the importance of access to higher education and health care, on “the good, the bad and the ugly” of identity politics, and on the essential role of ethics—especially professional and political ethics—in public affairs.
She continues her pathbreaking scholarship as Penn’s President, publishing her sixteenth book, The Spirit of Compromise: Why Governing Demands It and Campaigning Undermines It (with Dennis Thompson) in 2012. Judy Woodruff of the PBS Newshour called the book “a clear-eyed examination of the forces that bring warring political leaders together or keep them apart. I wish every policymaker would read it.”
Appointed in 2009 by President Barack Obama, she chairs the Presidential Commission for the Study of Bioethical Issues. She was elected and served as Chair of the Association of American Universities (AAU) in 2014-2015. She also serves on the National Commission on the Humanities and Social Sciences, and on the Boards of the National Constitution Center and the Vanguard Group. Dr. Gutmann has been honored with the Harvard University Centennial Medal (2003), the Carnegie Corporation Academic Leadership Award (2009), was named by Newsweek one of the “150 Women Who Shake the World” (2011), and received the Anti-Defamation League’s Americanism Award (2014) and the Urban Affairs Coalition’s Doer Award (2015). She is an elected member of the American Philosophical Society, the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the National Academy of Education, and is W.E.B. DuBois Fellow of the American Academy of Political and Social Science. She previously served as President of the American Society for Political and Legal Philosophy. Dr. Gutmann is a founding member of the Global Colloquium of University Presidents, an advisory group to the Secretary General of the United Nations. She has received numerous honorary degrees, including a Doctor of Laws from Columbia University in 2012, and she was named an Honorary Fellow of the London School of Economics in 2013.
Dr. Gutmann launched the Penn Compact in her inaugural address on October 15, 2004. In 2013 she introduced the Penn Compact 2020, a plan to maximize Penn’s inclusion, innovation and impact with bold next steps to increase access to Penn’s exceptional intellectual resources; integrate knowledge across academic disciplines with a strong emphasis on innovation; and engage locally, nationally, and globally to bring the benefits of Penn’s research, teaching, and service to individuals and communities at home and
around the world. In 2014, Gutmann announced Penn Compact 2020 initiatives to create up to 50 new endowed professorships utilizing matching donor funds, and to raise an additional $240 million for undergraduate financial aid on top of the $360 million raised for undergraduate aid during the recently completed Making History campaign.
As the leader of Philadelphia’s largest private employer, Dr. Gutmann heads one of the Commonwealth’s most powerful economic engines, with an estimated total economic impact of $14 billion annually in Pennsylvania. As part of that impact, the University has made substantial and far-reaching investments in its own physical infrastructure. Penn’s campus master plan, Penn Connects, has added nearly 4 million square feet of space to campus since 2006 while increasing open space on campus by 25 percent. Penn Park received the Design Champion Award in 2012, with Design Philadelphia calling it an “urban sanctuary” in Philadelphia.
Recent campus development highlights include the Krishna P. Singh Nanotechnology Center (opened in October 2013), Golkin Hall (2012), Shoemaker Green (2012), and the acquisition of 23 acres on the South Bank of the Schuylkill River to be developed by the University. Penn also has created a state-of-the-art medical complex that fully integrates translational research with patient care through the opening of the Ruth and Raymond Perelman Center for Advanced Medicine (2008), the Roberts Proton Therapy Center (2009), and the Smilow Center for Translational Research Center (2011).
Prior to her appointment at Penn, Dr. Gutmann served as Provost at Princeton University, where she also was the Laurance S. Rockefeller University Professor of Politics. She was the Founding Director of the University Center for Human Values, an eminent, multidisciplinary center that supports teaching, scholarship and public discussion of ethics and human values. Also at Princeton, she served as Dean of the Faculty and as Academic Advisor to the President, and was awarded the President’s Distinguished Teaching Award.
Dr. Gutmann graduated magna cum laude from Harvard-Radcliffe College. She earned her master’s degree in Political Science from the London School of Economics and her doctorate in Political Science from Harvard University. She is married to Michael W. Doyle, the Harold Brown Professor of Law and International Affairs at Columbia University. Their daughter, Abigail Gutmann Doyle, is Associate Professor of Chemistry at Princeton University. Their son-in-law, Jakub Jurek, is Visiting Professor at The Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania.