The University of Ottawa joined the Scholars at Risk (SAR) Network in 2014 and entrusted the Human Rights Research and Education Centre (HRREC) to develop a SAR uOttawa Program.

About SAR uOttawa

Scholars at Risk is an international network of higher education institutions dedicated to protecting threatened scholars, preventing attacks on higher education communities and promoting academic freedom worldwide. SAR uOttawa partners with the Scholars at Risk (SAR) Network and the Institute of International Education’s Scholar Rescue Fund (IIE-SRF) to offer one to two-year appointments in host departments across the university. SAR uOttawa is also supported by the Association of Professors of the University of Ottawa (APUO) and the Official Languages and Bilingualism Institute (OLBI).

HRREC Associate Director, Viviana Fernandez, manages the SAR uOttawa Program. She was elected to the SAR Canada Section's Steering Committee (2016-2022) and represented Canada in the SAR International Advisory Committee (IAC) during this period. Viviana currently represents the Coalition for Academic Freedom in the Americas (CAFA) in the SAR IAC.

  • Academic Freedom Monitoring: uOttawa is engaged in the Academic Freedom Monitoring Project through the Human Rights Clinic since 2018 and contributes to the Free to Think Report through the monitoring of selected countries in the Americas.
  • Coalition for Academic Freedom in the Americas (CAFA): HRREC, the University of Monterrey and the SAR Network launched this project in 2021 to increase awareness and advocacy in defence of academic freedom across the Americas. The Coalition seeks to foster direct advocacy and position the Americas as a global leaders on the development of relevant human rights norms and standards to protect higher education spaces and academic communities. Since 2021, the Centre and its partners have also participated in an Academic Network created by the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) to provide technical assistance, contribute to the development of the Inter-American Human Rights System (IAHRS) and promote the use of the IAHRS and its standards. An important milestone of this work has been the launch of the Inter-American Principles on Academic Freedom and University Autonomy in December 2021.
  • Remote Scholars Initiative: Since January 2021, SAR uOttawa assists threatened scholars who may not be able to travel through remote fellowships. Currently, the program is focused on scholars located in Venezuela.
  • Learn more about the Scholars a Risk (SAR) uOttawa Program.
  • To contact the SAR Program at uOttawa, please write to [email protected].
One women and one man holding books to represent scholars at risk

“We are very thankful that our graduate students had an opportunity to learn from scholar Fayyaz Baqir (hosted at uOttawa in 2018-2020). He definitely made an enormous contribution to our School.”

Susan Spronk | Associate Professor | School of International Development & Global Studies | uOttawa

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