Academic Freedom Media Review

Posted: 29-01-2021 21:15 | Views: 669

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January 15 - 21, 2021

Scholars at Risk monitors reports of threats to academic freedom and higher education communities worldwide, including media articles, blogs, opinion pieces and other announcements. Unless otherwise indicated (such as in articles written by SAR), the language and views contained in the search results reflect those of the originating author and/or publication and do not necessarily represent the views of Scholars at Risk or its members, affiliates, board or staff. An archive of the Media Review is available on our website.

UNITED STATES: Snitch Switch
Colleen Flaherty, Inside Higher Ed, 1/21
The University of Florida has updated the course-concern reporting feature on its app to allow students to report professors who hold virtual classes. Professors reportedly see this feature as a “tattle button” and some professors are speaking out.
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CHINA: Hong Kong protests: about 10 Chinese University students disciplined, school heads pressed by lawmakers to get tough
Chan Ho-him, South China Morning Post, 1/19
Following a meeting of pro-establishment lawmakers and 11 Chinese university heads, ten students were punished for incidents related to the 2019 anti-government protests in Hong Kong.
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THE PHILIPPINES: Philippine protest over permission for security forces to enter university
Neil Jerome Morales, Reuters via Nasdaq, 1/19
President Rodrigo Duterte’s government scrapped a 1989 agreement between the University of the Philippines and the Department of National Defense, which prevented military and police forces from entering the University of the Philippines’ 17 campuses without consent.
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CHINA / HUNGARY: Chinese university to open Budapest campus as Orban tilts to Beijing
Valerie Hopkins, Financial Times, 1/18
Hungary is to host the only Chinese university operating inside the EU in a sign of deepening ties between the government of Viktor Orban and Beijing.
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TURKEY: Over 2,300 academics from 52 countries: We stand with Boğaziçi
Bianet, 1/18
Amid protests against the appointment of Bulu as the new president of Boğaziçi, 2,314 academics from 52 countries have signed a joint statement: “We stand with Boğaziçi University students and faculty in their struggle for academic freedom and autonomy.”
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UNITED STATES: Conservative forces ‘limiting racial progress’ on US campuses
Ellie Bothwell, Times Higher Education, 1/17
Universities must fight claims that they are “liberal bastions” and anti-free speech to properly tackle racial diversity, according to an academic who said that institutions’ traditional views about disciplines and departments were hampering progress on equality.
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EU: New EU law needed to protect universities from big tech
Jan Petter Myklebust, University World News, 1/16
Rector Magnificus of the University of Amsterdam, Professor Karen Maex, has called on European Commissioners to propose a ‘Digital University Act’ to secure universities’ status as independent education and research institutions and vital building blocks for the organisation of knowledge and to defend them against pressures from big tech companies.
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UNITED STATES: Amid digital crackdown, Chinese Politics professor recommends students in China avoid his class
Marie-Rose Sheinerman, The Daily Princetonian, 1/15
Assistant professor of politics and international affairs at Princeton University, Rory Truex, recommended that remote students currently residing in China not take his course on Chinese politics. In an email to students, Professor Truex said his course contains material the Chinese government would find sensitive and cited China’s new national security law as reasons to be “a little more cautious this year.”
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BELARUS / LITHUANIA: Expelled and persecuted Belarusian students find refuge in Lithuanian universities
Ieva Žvinakytė, LRT, 1/11
Belarusian university students have been forced to flee after attending protests and being expelled, persecuted, and imprisoned. Some have found their way to Lithuania.
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TURKEY: Academic Freedom as a Human Right; Final Declaration of the International Conference
İnsan Hakları Okulu (The School of Human Rights), 1/08
Following the School of Human Rights, Turkey, (İHO) international online conference of academic freedom as a human right, which took place on 14-16 December 2020, İHO released a Final Declaration concerning Academic Freedom as a Human Right.
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