Once upon a time, ‘diversity’ of thought used to mean a variety of ideas. Somewhere along the way, that turned into ‘social justice, all others need not apply’.

USA Today explores where higher education went wrong and what needs to be done to correct the course:

Few things in my 40-plus years in higher education have concerned me as much as the uncivil discourse we are seeing today on college campuses like mine and others across the United States — from Charlottesville, Va., to Berkeley, Calif., and all points in between.

I believe that we in higher education are partially to blame not just for the tensions on our campuses, but for the nation’s increasingly negative attitudes about diversity and inclusivity.

Why do I place some blame on us? Our motives are based in high ideals and noble expectations for society. No place more unctuously champions social justice than the college campus. It’s a consequence of our commitment to do good and be fair.

However, we have neglected to articulate a rationale for our diversity and free speech ideals beyond the case for social justice. And there is definitely more to say.

The facts are that racial, economic and gender diversity and commitment to valuing all voices have proven to be essential in making organizations from Wall Street to Main Street more profitable, productive, financially sound and responsive to customers. This approach has been shown conclusively to produce the kinds of people our nation needs to compete globally, and we need to be more assertive in trumpeting this truth.

A 2015 McKinsey study of more than 350 public companies in North America, Latin America and the United Kingdom showed that those in the top quartile for gender diversity were 15% more likely to produce better returns, and those in the top quartile for racial and ethnic diversity were even more likely to do better. Less diverse companies were likely to be less profitable. And there are other studies with similar findings.

The whole piece is well worth the read.