Conference on the Ukraine crisis: responses from the European higher education and research sectors

A conversation on the role of the European higher education and research sectors to the crisis facing Ukrainian students, scholars, and scientists.

The UN Refugee Agency reports that 6.1 million Ukrainian refugees have fled the country following Russian invasion. A much larger number are internally displaced. Governments and humanitarian organizations have responded rapidly to meet the immediate humanitarian crisis, yet there is growing concern on how to broaden areas of protection and support with a longer-term perspective in mind.

Institutions in the Higher Education and Research sectors have mobilized to provide immediate support, but may also play a key role in helping keep Ukraine’s higher education and research sectors as operational as possible, and in preparing for the rebuilding of these sectors as soon as it is viable to do so.

Science for Ukraine, Kristiania University College, All European Academies (ALLEA), and the International Science Council (ISC) are jointly organizing an online conference on 15 June 2022, from 9:00 – 14:00 CEST (7:00 – 12:00 UTC).

The conference seeks to bring different stakeholders together to discuss best practices, to begin planning for medium to long-term actions to support and redevelop Ukraine’s higher education, research, and development sectors, and to strengthen relationships within Europe. Maintaining and extending in-country and international teaching, supporting the continued participation of Ukrainian scholars and researchers in high quality research projects and international research collaborations, preserving existing and rebuilding damaged education and research systems and infrastructure, will ultimately serve to lay the groundwork for peace that collectively benefits societies and people across borders. 

This consultative conference will bring together key organizations and individuals working to support at-risk, displaced and refugee scholars and researchers. The goal is to learn from what works, identify good practice, and draft recommendations for both the medium and long term.

The objectives of this conference are:

  1. To share and identify best practices for how the European higher education and research sectors can offer impactful support that addresses the actual needs of the Ukrainian scholars and researchers.
  2. To identify priorities for medium and long-term plans for the ongoing support enabling the continued participation of Ukrainian scholars and researchers in high quality research projects and international research collaborations, and the rebuilding of the scientific and academic systems of Ukraine.
  3. To maintain momentum for advocacy and support for the Ukrainian higher education and research sectors beyond the initial emergency response.

Registration for the conference has now closed. It is free to attend and open to all interested institutions within the higher education and research sectors, humanitarian actors, relevant government bodies, and donors.

Additional information and resources relating to scientists in Ukraine

A call to ISC Members: how to assist displaced Ukrainian scholars

This blog highlights findings from the Young Scientists Council at the Ministry of Education and Science in Ukraine in a paper that assesses the current needs of Ukrainian scholars and requests assistance.

Statements, offers of assistance and resources on the current war in Ukraine

A regularly updated list of information from the international scientific community.

Science in Exile

Science in Exile

This initiative is a collaboration between TWAS, the InterAcademy Partnership (IAP) and the International Science Council (ISC), under the umbrella of Science International. The programme brings together displaced scientists and existing organizations that provide assistance to affected scientists, to exchange ideas and best practices, identify gaps in building practical support programmes across different world regions, and raise awareness of the issue among governments, international agencies and the broader scientific community.

Read and sign the Science in Exile Declaration

Supporting at-risk, displaced and refugee scientists: A call to action

The Science in Exile Declaration outlines key commitments necessary at the global level for both immediate and long-term support and protection to scholars and scientists who are at-risk, displaced or refugees, so as to build a better future for them, and for science and society at large.


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