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The European Commission has launched a consultation to gather more in-depth views on the state of fundamental academic values (as per the Rome Ministerial Communiqué), namely academic freedom and integrity, institutional autonomy, student and staff participation in higher education governance and public responsibility for and of higher education.

The Commission Communication on the European Strategy for universities, announced in January 2022, states that “universities are key to promote active citizenship, tolerance, equality and diversity, openness and critical thinking for more social cohesion and social trust, European strategy for universities action and thus protect European democracies”. In the face of restrictions on the freedom of speech and limitations on the independent operating model of universities, the latest communication suggests concrete actions, among which proposing in 2024 guiding principles on protecting fundamental academic values.

To this end, ICF Consulting Services Limited is currently undertaking a study on behalf of the European Commission, Directorate-General for Education and Culture (DG EAC). Universities are encouraged to take part in the consultation activities to voice their views on the issues of fundamental academic values in the EU, with the ultimate objective of contributing to the development of the guiding principles.

The deadline for survey responses is Saturday 15 July.

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