OR (International Freedom of Research) - Founding Document
Israeli academics face discrimination from numerous academic institutions, organizations, and scholars throughout the world, because of their nationality. This discrimination takes various forms, such as summary rejection of scholarly papers, refusals to provide reference letters, exclusion from conferences and academic appointments, as well as calls for targeted academic boycotts.
IFOR is an apolitical academic center that is dedicated to ensuring that Israeli scholars and academic institutions are granted full and unhindered access to academic activities worldwide. IFOR maintains that just as international academics enjoy full academic freedom in Israel, Israelis are entitled to this same freedom elsewhere.
The boycott of Israeli scholars and academic institutions is discriminatory and violates human dignity, justice, and the right to equality.
Academic boycott is itself an oxymoron, because it denies free speech and pluralistic discourse, which are the foundations of any academic endeavour. Academic research is intended to promote scientific progress, human development, and intellectual discourse; academic boycotts compromise them all. They silence dissenting opinions and suppress opposition, and may therefore bring about a chilling effect on researchers as a whole.
Using academic boycotts against individuals or institutions to achieve a political goal is unethical and breaches fundamental elements of academic integrity.
1. Investigate the extent of boycotts and other forms of discriminations against Israeli scholars and academic institutions, the mechanisms applied to further discrimination against Israeli academics, as well as the legal implications.
2. Persuade academics, legislatures, government officials, and the general public, about the malevolence of academic discrimination, using conventional and new-media outlets. IFOR intends to establish an online forum, produce videos about Israeli academic activity, and provide grants to scholars writing against academic boycotts.
3. Act against academic discrimination and boycotts using a variety of measures, such as filing complaints and litigating against organizations for discriminating against Israeli academics, initiating relevant legislation, and organizing demonstrations.
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Founder & Director: Dr. Sharona Goldenberg: