EUA supports "European Universities for an Open World" initiative
On 11 November 2015, the German Rectors’ Conference (Hochschulrektorenkonferenz - HRK) launched the "European Universities for an Open World" initiative, for which the European University Association has declared its full support. The initiative calls on universities to stand up against any form of xenophobia, and to defend the basic university values of openness, tolerance and diversity against the backdrop of the ongoing refugee crisis in Europe.
The EUA emphasises that openness, tolerance and inclusiveness are fundamental university values, and diversity of opinion and the free exchange of ideas are the basis of all academic teaching and research. European universities in particular have a long history of cooperating beyond national boundaries. According to the EUA, the trend towards increased internationalisation has been one of the most important developments for universities in recent years, as can also be seen from the EUA's 2015 Trends report. This development is expected to continue, also given the societal challenges that require global solutions, while at the same time Europe is facing major challenges with political, economic and societal implications in the form of massive inward migration and a weakening of European solidarity.
The EUA therefore calls upon universities and their communities to reassert their commitment to the fundamental values of openness, tolerance and solidarity, by opposing any form of racism, discrimination and national stereotyping; by unreservedly committing to an open society; and by encouraging other societal actors to do the same.
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