Academic Freedom and the Law: A Comparative Study by Eric Barendt

By Eric Barendt

Academic Freedom and the legislation: A Comparative Study offers a serious research of the legislation on the subject of educational freedom in 3 significant jurisdictions: the U.S., the united kingdom, and Germany. The publication outlines many of the claims that could be made to educational freedom via person collage academics and through universities and different better schooling associations, and it examines the excuses which were recommend for those claims. 3 chapters take care of the criminal rules of educational freedom in all of the 3 international locations. A separate bankruptcy is dedicated to the constraints on freedom of analysis, that could be imposed through the rules of scientific trials, through highbrow estate legislation, and through the phrases of contracts made among researchers and the corporations sponsoring clinical and different examine. The ebook additionally examines the impression of modern terrorism legislation at the instructing and examine freedom of teachers, and it discusses their freedom to talk about common political and social issues unrelated to their paintings. this can be the 1st comparative research of an issue of basic significance to all teachers and others operating in universities. It emphasizes the significance of educational freedom, whereas mentioning that, every now and then, exaggerated claims were made to its workout.

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The Nolan Committee itself was less hesitant, stating that the true importance of academic freedom should not be underestimated, if it is properly defined (ibid, para 97). Sir Peter Swinnerton-Dyer, a mathematician, was the last Chairman of the University Grants Committee from 1983, and the first Chief Executive of the Universities Funding Council, which replaced it in 1989. See below ch 4, s III(B). 3 HC Debates, vol 458, col 239WH (20 March 2007). For the UK Education Reform Act 1988, s 202, see below ch 2, s III(A) and ch 4, s III.

A court can decide a controversial academic freedom claim, just as it can do justice to comparable free speech arguments,37 only once it has formed a view about the proper scope of these claims in the light of their overall justification. ) So chapters two and three are concerned with arguments of political principle, though some reference, particularly in chapter two, is made to legal sources to show how these principles are reflected in legislation and in court opinions. Decisions of the courts give more precision to abstract claims to academic freedom, as well as exploring their implications for the resolution of concrete disputes.

41 The Robbins Report in 1963 recognised the dangers to institutional freedom arising from the increasing material dependence on the state. It recognised nonetheless some key constituents of this freedom that should not and need not be eroded: the freedom of universities to make their own appointments; their freedom to devise their own degree courses and monitor standards; and the freedom to select their own students. 42 Moreover, it was for universities themselves to determine the appropriate balance between teaching and research for their own institutions.

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