Scholars at Risk awarded the 2021 International Science Council Scientific Freedom and Responsibility Award

Posted October 13, 2021

October 13th, 2021 – The International Science Council (ISC) has announced Scholars at Risk (SAR) as the recipient of their Scientific Freedom and Responsibility Award, in recognition of “outstanding contribution to defending and promoting the free and responsible practice of science.” SAR accepted this award during the ISC’s 2nd General Assembly, which was held online and takes place every three years. 

“As is so often stated, the 21st century is the ‘knowledge century’ and this means that we expect fantastic scientific discoveries and innovations,”  said Robert Quinn, SAR’s Executive Director. “By protecting scholars and promoting academic freedom, we can make sure that these don’t just benefit the well-off few, but rather serve the broadest public.”

The International Science Council Awards Programme, established in 2020, recognizes individuals, groups, and initiatives launched by the organization and its members that advance science as a public good. This year, additional categories include the Science for Sustainability Award, Science-for-Policy Award, Policy-for-Science Award and Early Career Scientist Award.

As an ISC partner organization, SAR works with the ISC’s Committee for Freedom and Responsibility in Science (CFRS) to protect scientists’ rights and freedom.

Criteria for the award includes contribution to the defence of the freedom of science and promotion of the responsibility of scientists in scientific conduct. SAR appreciates the impact of the award beyond its generous recognition and hopes it will bring greater visibility and more institutions to the various global efforts to support scholars, scientists, and researchers at risk. 

“We have the great privilege of working with a community of institutions, associations, and individuals who are similarly dedicated to the values of higher education; so much so that they open their hearts, homes and campuses to offer sanctuary to threatened colleagues,” said Quinn. “They deserve this award, and I accept it on their behalf.”

About Scholars at Risk: Scholars at Risk (SAR) is an international network of over 500 higher education institutions in more than 40 countries working to protect threatened scholars and promote academic freedom. SAR protects scholars suffering grave threats to their lives, liberty and well-being by arranging temporary positions for those forced to flee. Through monitoring and advocacy, SAR identifies, documents and takes action in response to threats and attacks on higher education communities. Through working groups, conferences, research, and publications, SAR brings together leading scholars, advocates, students and professionals to inform and shape on-going work to promote stronger university values worldwide.

Institutions or individuals interested in learning more about SAR, its activities, should visit or email For more about the ISC General Assembly, visit the event page on the ISC website.