Berlin declaration pledges support for threatened academics

The academic exchange organisations of the G7 states have presented a joint declaration on international academic cooperation in times of crisis with partners from eight further countries and the Academic Cooperation Association (ACA), the European umbrella organisation of internationalisation agencies.

The “Berlin Declaration on International Academic Cooperation amidst a World in Crisis” is the outcome of the Higher Education Summit 2022 held in Berlin in early May by the ‘G7 + Partners’, a group of international education agencies from the G7 countries and ACA, plus international education agencies from Spain, Poland, Norway, the Netherlands, Finland, the Czech Republic and Austria.

This year’s meeting was dedicated to “International Academic Cooperation amidst a World in Crisis: Opportunities and Challenges”. The German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) had invited the participants to Berlin in the context of Germany’s G7 presidency and in the run-up to the G7 Summit in June, which will also be held in Germany.

Against the background of the war in Ukraine, the signatories of the declaration see themselves united “in the belief that democratic states which cherish and share fundamental values such as freedom, including academic freedom, and the rule of law, should stand together, and that their higher education institutions need to continue to collaborate closely”.

They regard the mission of international academic cooperation as that of seeking and developing “solutions to global challenges such as climate change, gender equality, healthcare and the peaceful resolution of conflicts”.

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