14 October 2019

InSPIREurope: European Network to protect researchers at risk takes up its work

The Alexander von Humboldt Foundation has joined forces with nine European partners to support, promote and integrate researchers at risk on a coordinated basis in Europe and thus provide them protection in coming years.

In future, nine European institutions will collaborate within the framework of the EU-funded InSPIREurope (Initiative to Support, Promote and Integrate Researchers at Risk in Europe) initiative with the aim of coordinating and expanding their efforts to protect and support researchers at risk in Europe.

Institutions such as the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation which has used the Philipp Schwartz Initiative since 2015 to ensure that researchers at risk are protected and integrated in Germany, and the comparable PAUSE programme (Programme national d’aide à l’Accueil en Urgence des Scientifiques en Exil) at the Collège de France in France, Scholars at Risk Europe, the European University Association, and the Dutch non-governmental organisation Stichting voor Vluchteling-Studenten (University Assistance Fund) are participating in the InSPIREurope project alongside the University of Oslo and the University of Gothenburg. The Jagiellonian University in Krakow, Poland, and the Aristoteles University of Thessaloniki, Greece, are also involved in the joint efforts to help researchers at risk in Europe.
The InSPIREurope alliance has its offices at Maynooth University in Ireland, where its activities will be coordinated by the European section of the Scholars at Risk organisation.

The Humboldt Foundation has worked with German universities and research institutions in Germany since 2015 within the framework of the Philipp Schwartz Initiative to assist researchers at risk. The foundation’s integration into the InSPIREurope alliance has added a European dimension to its commitment to helping researchers who are at risk or persecuted. “We want to increase our international collaboration to protect threatened researchers, particularly at European level, so that researchers can be offered support and protection here. The aim of this alliance is to jointly champion a Europe of scientific freedom and thus send a signal – in Europe and around the world”, said Enno Aufderheide, Secretary General of the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation.

In addition to its collaboration with its European partners, the Humboldt Foundation will continue the work of the Philipp Schwartz Initiative. In the course of five selection rounds conducted since 2016 this initiative has chosen 198 researchers at risk from 16 countries for research stays at German host institutions.

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