27 April 2016

Workshop in Berlin offers exchange and networking within the framework of the Philipp Schwartz Initiative to support threatened researchers

Humboldt Foundation supports the establishment of a German chapter of the Scholars at Risk network

There is much willingness at German universities and research institutions to help researchers at risk. However many questions arise when it comes to putting this willingness into practice: how does an institution decide which threatened researchers it will support with its limited financial means? How does it handle residence permit matters? What happens when the temporary assistance they provide comes to an end?

These and other questions took centre stage on 19 and 20 April 2016 at a meeting held in Berlin by the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation in connection with the Philipp Schwartz Initiative to assist threatened researchers. More than 100 participants from German universities and research institutions, foundations, ministries, and partner organisations from Germany and abroad plus several threatened researchers discussed these issues in numerous working groups. These groups were moderated by representatives of the Humboldt Foundation’s partner organisations which specialise in dealing with threatened researchers: the Scholars at Risk network, the Scholar Rescue Fund, and the Council for At-Risk Academics.

Linking German research institutions with one another and with experienced organisations to promote the regular sharing of experience with and information on dealing with threatened researchers is one of the aims of the Philipp Schwartz Initiative. The Humboldt Foundation is responding to the needs of universities in this area and has offered to support the establishment of a German chapter of the global Scholars at Risk network and to serve as a platform for it. 

The Philipp Schwartz Initiative seeks to put German universities and research institutions in a position to host threatened foreign researchers for two years. Starting in the summer of 2016, up to 20 researchers are to be granted fellowships so that they can continue their work at their host institution.  The Philipp Schwartz Initiative was established by the Humboldt Foundation with assistance from the Federal Foreign Office. Financial assistance is provided by the Alfried Krupp von Bohlen and Halbach-Stiftung, the Fritz Thyssen Foundation, the Gerda Henkel Foundation, the Klaus Tschira-Stiftungand the Robert Bosch Foundation.


Kristina Güroff
Press, Communications and Marketing
Tel.: +49 228 833-455
Fax: +49 228 833-441

Georg Scholl
Head of
Press, Communications and Marketing
Tel.: +49 228 833-258
Fax: +49 228 833-441

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