Sciences Po hosts the academic freedom week

14/09/2022 | 12:00 Press Releases  

Paris, September 14th 2022 - As Sciences Po celebrates its 150th Anniversary, the institution will host on its campus in Paris the Academic Freedom Week from Wednesday 14th of September to Friday 16th of September.

As initiated by Mathias Vicherat, Director of Sciences Po, the Academic Freedom Week gathers university researchers in the fields of social sciences and humanities, as well as members of international partner universities of Sciences Po. They will both work and reflect on the many pressures that weigh today on universities and research all over the world.

Sciences Po, as the historic French university for social sciences and humanities, today the most international in the world (50% of foreign students, 150 nationalities represented) and a founding member of “CIVICA - the European university of social sciences”, is more than ever a fierce advocate of the freedom to teach, to conduct research, to share results, whatever the subject or the field may be, as long as it respects scientific integrity and an evaluation by peers.

Those days of sharing and thinking will also allow the academic community to reaffirm its support to Fariba Adelkhah, a Franco-Iranian anthropologist and Research Director at the Center for International Studies (CERI) of Sciences Po, imprisoned in Iran since June 5th, 2019.

At the end of this Academic Freedom Week, a set of tangible recommendations will be published and promoted by all the present institutions in order to defend and promote academic freedom in the world.

A total of four roundtables are scheduled:

  • Wednesday, 14th of September from 5pm to 7:30pm - “Attacks on research and teaching freedom in authoritarian contexts”. Will be attending:
    • Mathias Vicherat, Director of Sciences Po
    • Béatrice Hibou, Research Director at the CNRS/Centre for International Studies of Sciences Po (CERI), part of Support Committee of Fariba Adelkhah
    • Sergei Guriev, Provost and Professor of Economics at the Department of Economics, Sciences Po
    • Gustavo Gomes da Costa Santos, Sociology Associate Professor (Université fédérale de Pernambouc) and scientific contributor, Université Libre de Bruxelles (ULB) - (online attendance)
    • Peidong Sun, Associate Professor of history Cornell University (online attendance)
    • Alain Dieckhoff, Director of Sciences Po’s Centre for International Studies (CERI).
  • Thursday, 15th of September from 2pm to 5pm - “Academic freedom in France and liberal democracies: new stakes, new challenges” Will be attending:
    • Alain Chenu, Scientific Integrity Advisor of Sciences Po
    • Olivier Beaud, Paris Panthéon-Assas University
    • Hélène Michel, Strasbourg University
    • Yves Gingras, UQAM Montreal
    • Sarah Gensburger, CNRS
    • Pascal Engel, EHESS
    • Moderation lead by Frédérique Leichter-Flack and Marion Fontaine, University Professors, Sciences Po’s Centre for History
  • Thursday, 15th of September from 5pm to 8pm - “Academic Freedom & the Academic Freedom Index: measuring and framing”. Will be attending:
    • Stéphanie Balme, Pr. Dean Sciences Po (University College/CERI)
    • Mathieu Denis, Acting CEO and Science Director of the International Science Council
    • Janika Spannagel, Postdoc researcher at Freie Universität Berlin
    • Joyce Pisarello, Director of Membership at Scholars at Risk (SAR), Florida
    • Mabruk Derbesh, Lecturer of comparative studies and Founder of the Libyan institute for academic freedom, Laureate of the French hosting program for scientists and artists in exile
    • Maria Cristina Russo, Director for the Global Approach and International Cooperation in Research and Innovation at the European Commission
    • Michael Murphy, President of the European University Association (EUA)
    • Liviu Matei, Professor of higher education and public policy, and head of the School of Education, Communication and Society at King's College, London
    • Sergei Guriev, Provost and Professor of Economics at the Department of Economics, Sciences Po
    • Manuel Tunon de Lara, President of France Universités
  • Friday, 16th of September from 2:15pm to 4pm - closing the 150th Anniversary Festival: “Academic Freedom: what do our university communities owe society ?” Will be attending:
    • Michael Ignatieff, Writer, historian, professor and former politician
    • Sergei Guriev, Provost and Professor of Economics at the Department of Economics, Sciences Po
    • Silvia Giorguli, Sociologist, President of El Colegio de México
    • Zeblon Vilakazi, Vice Chancellor and Principal, University of the Witwatersrand.
    • Moderator: Vanessa Scherrer, Vice President for International Affairs at Sciences Po


About Sciences Po

Founded around values of openness and excellence, Sciences Po is a selective research university of international standing whose unique model associates a specialization in social sciences and humanities and  a multidisciplinarity and a professional anchoring to train actors that can understand and transform society.


PR contact:

Romain Becker : / 00 33 1 45 49 50 79

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