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History & Mission

Launched at an event at the European Parliament in November 2018, the establishment of SAR Europe at Maynooth represents the culmination of nearly two decades of partnership between European higher education institutions and the global Scholars at Risk Network.

Scholars at Risk Europe, hosted at Maynooth University, Ireland is the European office of the global Scholars at Risk network. Scholars at Risk is an international network of higher education institutions and individuals working to protect threatened scholars and to promote academic freedom. 

SAR Europe supports and coordinates the activities of Scholars at Risk national sections and partner networks across Europe to strengthen our collective voice at the European level and contribute to informed policymaking for the greater protection of scholars and increased respect for academic freedom worldwide.

Specifically, SAR Europe aims to:

  • Contribute to informed policymaking in Europe on academic freedom, higher education values, and support for at-risk scholars, including through convening a European Coordinating Committee for Academic Freedom Advocacy;
  • Strengthen cooperation across Europe in support of at-risk scholars, primarily through coordination of the EU-funded Inspireurope project, a 10-partner initiative to support, promote and integrate researchers at risk in Europe;
  • Support and coordinate the activities of national SAR sections and partner networks across Europe, and increase participation from Central, Eastern and Southern Europe in activities to protect scholars and promote academic freedom.


SAR Europe currently operates as an independent, informal research unit within the Maynooth University Social Sciences Institute (MUSSI) under a hosting agreement between Maynooth University…


SAR Europe staff are based at Maynooth University, Ireland and work closely with staff at SAR’s global office in New York.


SAR Europe’s current funding sources are the European Union’s Horizon 2020 program, SAR Inc. (SAR’s headquarters based at New York University), and Open Society Foundations (OSF).