Paris, 31 January 2017 — In the opinion of the Council, the Order is inappropriately broad in its scope and unfairly targets individuals based on their origin, putting it into violation of the Principle of Universality of Science, enshrined in the Council’s statutes. It is also concerned about the negative effects the Order will have on the freedom of scientific exchange among scientists and students of science worldwide, resulting in negative impacts on the progress of science, and impeding societies around the globe from benefitting from this progress.
As the world’s leading non-governmental international scientific organization, the Council promotes the Universality of Science on the basis that science is a common human endeavor that transcends national boundaries and is to be shared by all people. It believes that scientific progress results from global exchange of ideas, data, research materials and understanding of the work of others.
In advocating the free and responsible practice of science, ICSU promotes equitable opportunities for access to science and its benefits, and opposes discrimination based on such factors as ethnic origin, religion, citizenship, language, political or other opinion, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, disability, or age. The Council believes that the complex problems of our world can only be solved through international dialogue, collaboration and the sharing and exchange of ideas and research findings.
Statute 5 of the International Council for Science (ICSU) states: The Principle of Universality (freedom and responsibility) of Science: the free and responsible practice of science is fundamental to scientific advancement and human and environmental well-being. Such practice, in all its aspects, requires freedom of movement, association, expression and communication for scientists, as well as equitable access to data, information, and other resources for research. It requires responsibility at all levels to carry out and communicate scientific work with integrity, respect, fairness, trustworthiness, and transparency, recognising its benefits and possible harms.