STUTTGART, GERMANY, December 7, 2016 — In response to a dramatic increase in threats against scholars worldwide, Baden-Württemberg announces a new program to provide fellowships to persecuted scholars and to support their placement at universities within the state of Baden-Württemberg, where they can continue their academic work in freedom and safety.
Beginning in spring, 2017, the Baden-Württemberg Fund for Persecuted Scholars will consider applications from scholars from any country and any field who are threatened with harassment, violence, imprisonment, or death due to their academic work. Over the next several years, up to 25 scholars will receive fellowships to take up visiting research appointments at universities within the southwestern state of Germany.
This new program is a multilateral response, set up as a public-private partnership involving the Ministry of Science, Research, and Arts of the state of Baden-Württemberg, the Baden-Württemberg Stiftung, the Max Jarecki Foundation, and the Scholar Rescue Fund of the Institute of International Education (IIE). It will be co-funded by contributions of € 500,000 each from the Baden-Württemberg Stiftung and the Max Jarecki Foundation. The Baden-Württemberg Fund for Persecuted Scholars will coordinate its work with other efforts to assist threatened academics, such as the Philipp Schwartz Initiative implemented by the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation.
“The need today is very great, with scholars around the world facing fresh repression and conflict,” said Dr. Henry G. Jarecki, who leads the Max Jarecki Foundation and is Germany Chair of IIE’s Scholar Rescue Fund. “We welcome Germany’s increasing role as a safe haven country for academic refugees. With the support of Baden-Württemberg, we are launching a new excellence initiative for scholars in need of protection, placing them within a robust state system of higher education that welcomes diversity and innovation.” Dr. Jarecki was recently presented the Officer’s Cross Order of Merit award by President of Germany Joachim Gauck for his work to advance U.S.-German relations and to save threatened scholars from around the world.
“Now is the time to help persecuted scholars and to give a clear signal that Europe is a place where science is free and not bound to non-critical behavior,” said Theresia Bauer, Minister of Science, Research, and Arts for Baden-Württemberg. “We are glad that the Baden-Württemberg Stiftung and the Max Jarecki Foundation are providing the funds we need. We are going to work together very closely in the future.” Bauer also thanked the Foundation and IIE’s Scholar Rescue Fund for implementing the program. “We hope we can create a kind of role with this.” Minister Bauer is a leader in advocating for refugee education in Germany, having established a unique state-funded, excellence-based program providing higher education scholarships to refugees.
Christoph Dahl, Executive Director of the Baden-Württemberg Stiftung points out: “The newly built Baden-Württemberg Fund for Persecuted Scholars adds to the goals of our foundation perfectly by combining two areas, which are essential for us: fostering innovative research and international exchange of ideas on the one hand and supporting the integration of refugees in our state. We are proud to launch this multilateral program together with Henry G. Jarecki.”
“This multilateral effort speaks not only to the great need to help ever more scholars around the world, but also to the generosity of spirit – so evident across the state of Baden-Württemberg – that transforms lives and offers hope to scholars and all of us for a peaceful future,” said Allan E. Goodman, President of IIE.
Applications for this new initiative will be accepted by IIE’s Scholar Rescue Fund beginning in spring, 2017. Threatened scholars from any country and any field are eligible to apply. Candidates for the fellowship will be selected by the Baden-Württemberg Fund Selection Committee, to be comprised of German and U.S. representatives. The program will be hosted by the Baden-Württemberg Stiftung and the Max Jarecki Foundation.
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About the Institute of International Education Scholar Rescue Fund (IIE-SRF)
IIE-SRF formalizes the unwavering commitment that IIE has demonstrated for nearly a century to preserve the lives, voices, and ideas of scholars around the globe. IIE-SRF fellowships support visiting appointments for threatened scholars to continue their work in safety at partnering academic institutions worldwide. Since 2002, IIE-SRF has assisted more than 625 scholars from 55 countries, placing them at over 350 host partner institutions in 41 countries around the world.
About the Institute of International Education (IIE)
The Institute of International Education (IIE) is the leader in providing international education strategies and program services. Our international approach to education—diverse, borderless, impactful—is a proven way for governments and companies to invest in global talent and solidify overseas relationships. We work with policymakers, educators and employers across the globe to prepare students and professionals for the global workforce and equip them to solve the increasingly complex challenges facing our interconnected world. An independent, not-for-profit organization founded in 1919, IIE designs and implements over 250 programs of study and training for students, educators, young professionals and trainees from all sectors with funding from government and private sources. IIE has a network of 19 offices and affiliates worldwide and over 1,300 member institutions.