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Online Panel Discussion | Role of Institutions in Safeguarding Academic Freedom

Panel Discussion
poster - Oct 20, 17:30
Wednesday, October 20, 2021, 5:30 pm – 7:00 pm

Human RightS Initiative, with support of the OSUN Global Observatory on Academic Freedom, at the Central European University have the honor to invite you to reflect and discuss the role of the higher education institutions (HEIs) in the continuous struggle for academic freedom.   
Beyond CEU’s own experience in Hungary, throughout the world, academic freedom is endangered. From institutional attacks, from outside and within the institutions themselves, to unlawful detainments and imprisonments of scholars and students, including CEU’s student Ahmed Samir in Egypt; the search for truth at universities has become a dangerous endeavor.  

Universities do not control their national regulatory frameworks, which determine the degree of their institutional freedom and the professional freedoms of their academics and students, nor the limitations on their distractors. They can, however, challenge public authorities to create conditions for academic freedom, they can take action, within limits that differ from country to country, to document infringements of academic freedom, resist restrictive attempts by governments and regulators, and find ways to promote, assert and protect academic freedom. 

Our panel will discuss the following issues, among others: 

  • How can universities provide safety for their communities?  

  • Are there existing practices that can serve as good practice examples?  

  • How can institutions further support the work of scholars and student unions in the fight for academic freedom? 

  •  What are the limits of university management in front of the legislative, financial and political limitations?  

  • In which ways the university management, academic staff and students can join forces?  

  • How much the diplomatic and international relations hinder the possibilities for action worldwide? 


Liviu Matei, Provost Central European University 

Aysuda Kölemen, Threatened Scholars Initiative Manager, Bard College Berlin 

Marielle Debos, Assosciate Professor, Institute for Advanced Study, Princeton, Fariba Adelkhah support committee.

Erdost Akin, PhD Candidate Political Science, CEU


Milica Popović, OSUN Global Observatory on Academic Freedom