On March 28, the government of Hungary introduced a bill that, if passed, would effectively prevent the Central European University (CEU) in Budapest from operating in Hungary. CEU is a leading institution of higher education, which has played a pivotal role in providing world-class learning and research opportunities to academic communities in Europe and worldwide. Thousands of masters and doctoral students from around the world have studied there, and as many faculty and visitors have connections to the university.
The Association for the Study of Nationalities (ASN) is deeply concerned about the threat that the proposed bill presents for the survival of CEU in Hungary. ASN is a leading international academic association with long-standing connections with CEU. Our shared mission is to contribute to the advancement of scholarship, freedom of expression, and critical thinking. A significant number of CEU faculty members and students are part of the global ASN community. ASN organized a major European conference in 2014 together with the CEU’s Nationalism Studies Program.
The adoption of this legislation would be an assault an on an independent institution of higher education in the European Union, with repercussions well beyond the country. It would have a chilling effect on academic freedom worldwide. We urge the Hungarian government to withdraw the bill and to secure the ability of CEU to operate freely in Hungary.
The ASN Board of Directors and Advisory Board
31 March 2017