Phil Hopkins

Lurlyn and Durwood Fleming Professor of Philosophy Phil Hopkins has completed a second 10-month contract with the Austin Police Department (APD), this time to develop guidelines and formal procedures for selecting and reviewing video training material for the Cadet Academy that focus on recognizing and addressing the ways video material can have unintended consequences and harms and may reinforce rather than disrupt larger cultural narratives and stereotypes. Hopkins has written and submitted a final report to APD and the Austin City Council. He remains under contract for the remainder of this year on the larger curriculum review committee whose task is to review and develop improved training curricula and content across the several training regimes for APD. This work was recently featured in a 60 Minutesepisode that noted its innovative (and largely unprecedented) approach but not the many and various difficulties it faces among entrenched institutional histories and competing political agendas. 

—April 2022

Professor of Philosophy Phil Hopkins has completed an eight-month process as part of a community panel reviewing materials used at the Austin Police Department (APD) Training Academy. The panel was the longest-serving component of the Austin City Council’s Resolution 66 (December 2019), which initiated an investigation into bias and racism in the APD.  The final report has been presented to the community and to the Reimagining Public Safety Task Force and is being covered by a number of media sources, such as KXAN, whose coverage can be found here.

—January 2021

Professor of Anthropology Mel Johnson, Associate Professor of Education Alicia Moore, and Professor of Philosophy Phil Hopkins were panelists for the Georgetown Public Library event “Confronting Racism: A Community Conversation.” The event offered three sessions centered around three selected texts aimed at children, young adults, and adults. Moore participated in the panel discussing New Kid by Jerry Craft, a graphic novel about the struggle to fit in with a world that doesn’t look like you. Hopkins participated in the panel discussing The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas, which details the impact of police violence on communities of color. Johnson participated in the panel on Ibram X. Kendi’s How to Be an Antiracist, a best-selling book on how to fight racism and inequality.

—October 2020

Professor of Philosophy Phil Hopkins was a panelist for “Trauma and Policing: An Abusive Relationship,” part four of the Austin Justice Coalition conversation series Imagining a World without Police,on August 5. 

—August 2020

Professor of Philosophy Phil Hopkins was a panelist in a two-part Zoom town hall meeting on policing and Arab, Muslim, and Middle Eastern communities. The event was hosted by Interconnecting Arabs, Muslims, and Middle Easterners (I-AMM) on July 18 and 25.  

—July 2020