Call for Papers: Special Issue on Academic Freedom and Internationalisation

The International Journal of Human Rights invites submissions for its special issue on academic freedom and internationalisation.

About the Journal
The International Journal of Human Rights covers an exceptionally broad spectrum of human rights issues: human rights and the law, race, religion, gender, children, class, refugees and immigration. In addition to these general areas, the journal publishes articles and reports on the human rights aspects of: genocide, torture, capital punishment and the laws of war and war crimes. To encourage debate, the editors publish Forum pieces and discussion papers from authoritative writers in the field. They also welcome comments, reflections, thematic essays and review articles and critical surveys of the literature.

Call for papers
This call for papers draws on a virtual workshop organised by the Academic Freedom and Internationalisation Working Group (AFIWG) between 4-6 November 2020. The workshop brought together scholars from across the world to discuss the process of higher education internationalisation and its implications for academic freedom in various national contexts. One of our aims was to kick-start a debate and lay the foundation for future research of the academic freedom – internationalisation nexus. The workshop met with broad interest and suggestions for continuing the conversation. This special issue is the first response to those suggestions. Contributions will elaborate on the themes raised at the workshop and go beyond the panel discussions to elucidate the concept and definitions of academic freedom in the context of internationalisation, the impact of internationalisation on various national systems of higher education and modes of university governance. We are also open to contributions oriented at improving higher education policy-making as well as those analysing university governance
structures in the context of HE internationalisation.

The internationalisation of higher education is a fast-developing phenomenon that has been affecting most universities around the globe. This complex process leads to various outcomes. One the one hand, it facilitates knowledge coproduction and sharing across the globe; on the other, it has the potential to create new or aggravate existing challenges to academic freedom. In the context of internationalisation, challenges to academic freedom may arise from excessive marketisation and an opportunistic approach to building global ties within the higher education sector. Underfunding may leave universities vulnerable to interference by external donors. We are at a critical juncture where those challenges have been on the rise and concern more and more countries. Simultaneously, Free to Think annual reports by the Scholars at Risk Network show that the number of attacks on higher education communities worldwide has been growing over the years. The special issue sets out to provide a platform for addressing those challenges and for discussing ways to overcome them.

We are seeking empirical research articles, case studies, and conceptual articles covering, but not limited to, the following topics:
• Defining academic
• Measuring and monitoring academic freedom
• Challenges to academic freedom in different national contexts
• Mechanisms and initiatives for protection and promotion of academic freedom
• Security and protection strategies for academics at risk

Articles linking those themes to the internationalisation of Higher Education will be prioritised. Articles may present new research, critical analysis, or best practices, they may also highlight practical lessons learned from experience in different settings or countries.

Submission Instructions
If you are interested in submitting your article for the special issue, please send us a 300 word abstract with a title by 7th January 2021.

Articles for the special issue should be no more than 8,000 words including references, endnotes and footnotes and should conform to IJHR’s style and referencing guidelines.

Articles should be submitted online at the International Journal of Human Rights Scholar One Manuscripts site. Authors should indicate that the manuscript is for this special issue by selecting this from the dropdown list on Scholar One Manuscripts.

Other instructions for authors’ can be found under the ‘Authors and submissions’ here.

Abstract submissions must be received by 7th January 2021.
Authors of accepted abstracts will be notified by 9th January 2021.
Article submissions must be received by 15th March 2021 via the Journal’s online submission system.

For further information
Please see the journal homepage: or contact the editors of the special issue at [email protected] and [email protected]

Editors of the special issue:
Dr Yesim Yaprak Yildiz
Department of Sociology
Goldsmiths, University of London
[email protected]

Dr Kasia Kaczmarska
Lecturer in Politics and International Relations
University of Edinburgh
[email protected]

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