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Academic freedom in higher education

The UCU is committed to promoting and protecting the academic freedom of its members and of UK higher education institutions.

Read the UCU statement on academic freedom

UCU campaigned successfully against the sections of the Terrorism Bill which undermined academic freedom and threatened to criminalise both academics and librarians. UCU Scotland has also been successful in getting the Further and Higher Education (Scotland) Bill to include a clause that extends academic freedom to individuals involved in research and teaching in all Scottish higher and further education institutions.

UCU also campaigns internationally to ensure the protection of academic freedom, through organisations such as Education International (EI), the Network for Education and Academic Rights (NEAR) and Amnesty International. We also support the UNESCO 'Recommendation Concerning the Rights of Higher Education Personnel', which lays down the guiding principles of higher education as a public service and the rights and freedoms of higher education staff.

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