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Academic Freedom

Academic freedom in the Arab world has been increasingly undermined and strained. Individually and collectively, the freedom to access, create and share knowledge to serve communities through research, documentation, discussion and creativity faces the challenges of censorship and heavy state interference. 

Academic freedom doesn’t sit alone in societies but is part of the broader freedoms of expression exercised by artists, journalists, writers, and the public at large. Al-Fanar Media believes in the importance of researchers’ and academics’ personal autonomy and independence, as well as the significance of free speech and critical debate. We report on infringements of academic freedom in the Middle East and North Africa, the interference in the management of higher education institutions, the arrests of researchers, university staff and students. We also cover the efforts that governments and institutions are doing to preserve the right to academic freedom. 

We hope through our articles to keep the discussion around academic freedom in the MENA region alive, to contribute to the reduction of censorship in higher education institutions and research. 

Below are a series of articles and stories around the subject of academic freedom in the Arab world.

Academic Freedom Conflict Politics

Report Details Attacks on Education Worldwide

Edward Fox | 10 May 2018

Seven Arab countries show an increase in violence against schools, universities, students and staff in the past five years.

Academic Freedom Refugees Teaching Vocational Education

A Refugee Camp’s Teachers Get Some Welcome Global Support

John Dyer, Tonny Onyulo | 04 Mar 2018

A training and mentoring program helps make them better teachers and gives them new confidence.

Academic Freedom Conflict Refugees

A Geographer’s Bold Proposal: Borders Are a Mistake

Edward Fox | 15 Jan 2018

Hard borders between countries, an author argues, are not the norm in history, and create more problems than they solve.

Academic Freedom Gender Literature & Translation

‘Bad’ Arab Women: The Power of a Label

Ursula Lindsey | 02 Jan 2018

A new anthology looks at the stigma that attaches to women who challenge the status quo.

Academic Freedom Conflict Politics Students

Students’ Lack of Political Engagement Is Cause for Concern, Author Says

Ammar Faris | 15 Dec 2017

A Jordanian academic looks into the reasons for the decline of university students’ political awareness and suggests academic solutions.

Academic Freedom Data & Surveys Democracy

Report Shows Arab World’s Differing Opinions on Freedom of Expression

Benjamin Plackett | 08 Dec 2017

Freedom of speech is diminishing globally and Arab countries are leading this trend. But their citizens disagree as to whether fading freedom is a problem.

Academic Freedom Conflict Gender

Tariq Ramadan and the ‘Muslim Exception’

Ursula Lindsey | 29 Nov 2017

The political frenzy over accusations of rape against a prominent Islamic scholar obscures the need for more women to feel free to speak out against abuse.

Academic Freedom Internationalization Religion

NYU Department Cuts Ties With Abu Dhabi Campus

Eric J. Lyman | 12 Nov 2017

The department is protesting the Emirates’ denial of visas for two professors and calling on NYU’s president to lobby the U.A.E.’s government to change its visa policies.

Academic Freedom Curriculum Education Reform

New Cairo University Leader Advocates for Progressive Islam

Jacob Wirtschafter, Mina Nader | 24 Oct 2017

As a philosopher, Mohamed Osman El-Khosht was devoted to Islam’s dialogue with science and other religions. Now he brings an emphasis on critical thinking to Egypt’s largest university.

Academic Freedom Critical Thinking Faculty Minorities

A Kuwaiti Academic Fights for Embracing Diversity

Aisha Elgayar | 27 Sep 2017

Ibtihal Al-Khatib adopts critical thinking as a lifestyle and a teaching method to her students at Kuwait University.




Copyright © 2018 Al-Fanar Mediaحقوق © 2018 الفنار للإعلام

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Copyright © 2018 Al-Fanar Mediaحقوق © 2018 الفنار للإعلام