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Academic Freedom in Asia, part I



7 March 2023

In two webinars prominent scholars in the field will discuss the state of academic freedom in East and South-East Asia.

At the first event (see here for info on the second event), Dimitar Gueorguiev, editor of the new book New Threats to Academic Freedom in Asia (Columbia Press 2023), will provide an introduction to the book and an overview of the issues and challenges for academic freedom in Asia. Katrin Kinzelbach will give an analysis based on the most recent data set of the Academic Freedom Index that assesses academic freedom based on five different dimensions: the freedom to research and teach; the freedom of academic exchange and dissemination; institutional autonomy; campus integrity; and the freedom of academic and cultural expression. Kinzelbach will also provide a case study zooming in on China whereas Gueorguiev will discuss academic freedom in the context of China-US relations.

New Threats to Academic Freedom in Asia is available in an open-access version here

The Academic Freedom Index, a collaborative effort launched in 2019 between researchers at Friedrich-Alexander-Universität Erlangen-Nürnberg (FAU), the V-Dem Institute at Gothenburg University, the Scholars at Risk Network, and the Global Public Policy Institute (GPPi), is available here:

The Academic Freedom Index

Moderator Marina Svensson

LINK TO THE WEBINAR (passcode 087835)

Speakers bio

DIMITAR GUEORGUIEV is Associate Professor of Political Science in the Maxwell School of Citizenship Public Affairs and Chinese Studies Director at Syracuse University. Gueorguiev is an expert on Chinese politics.  His recent book, Retrofitting Leninism (Oxford, 2021), explores the limits and opportunities of non-democratic participation and digital control in China.

KATRIN KINZELBACH is a professor of political science at FAU Erlangen- Nürnberg, a visiting professor at KCL’s Transnational Law Institute, and a project manager in the global Varieties of Democracy project (V-Dem). In 2017, working in close cooperation with the Scholars at Risk Network, the Global Public Policy Institute and V-Dem, Kinzelbach initiated the Academic Freedom Index, which was launched in 2020. Kinzelbach also serves on the Academic Freedom Committee of the ISA. Prior to joining academia, she worked for the United Nations.

MARINA SVENSSON is professor of Modern China and director of the Centre for East and South-East Asian Studies. Her research covers issues related to human rights, digital developments, civil society and academic freedom in China. On the latter topic the most recent publication is “Chinese universities: restrictions on academic freedom and global implications,” in China: Shifting Power and Human Rights Diplomacy.  Ismangil, D., van der Schaaf, K. & Deklerck, S. (eds.). Netherlands: Amnesty International Netherlands, 2020