Who we are

Edinburgh Academics for Academic Freedom launched in March 2022 with the following founder members (listed alphabetically):


Dr Arianna Andreangeli, Senior Lecturer in European Law, Edinburgh Law School
Dr Shereen Benjamin, Senior Lecturer in Primary Education, Moray House School of Education and Sport
Professor Jonathan Hearn, Professor of Political and Historical Sociology, School of Social and Political Science
Dr Gale Macleod, Senior Lecturer in Education, Moray House School of Education and Sport
Dr Kath Murray, Research Fellow in Criminology, Edinburgh Law School
Professor Lindsay Paterson, Professor of Education Policy, School of Social and Political Science
Dr Michael Rosie, Senior Lecturer in Sociology, School of Social and Political Science
Dr Neil Thin, Senior Lecturer in Social Anthropology, School of Social and Political Science


If you would like to join us, you can email us at: Edinburgh.afaf@ed.ac.uk 
We understand that for some people, being openly associated with a network promoting academic freedom carries personal and/or professional risk. When you contact us, we will not release or publish your name or any contact details without your express permission, and there will be no pressure on anyone to make their membership known.


8 replies to “Who we are”

  1. Jo Phoenix says:

    Lovely to see this initiative! Good luck. Universities need to remember our legal obligations as well as original purposes.

    1. Rebecca Jiggens says:

      The legal obligation to avoid discrimination and harassment related to gender reassignment, you mean? Or the one saying some bigoted beliefs are not unworthy of protection in a democratic society?🤔

      Academic freedom includes being able to challenge bigotry from academics without fear of reprisal.

      1. Regan Hwang says:

        Of course, academic feedom must include the ability to challenge *any* belief without fear of reprisal. For example, academics as well as students should be able to challenge the recent narratives surrounding gender reassignment without it being automatically labelled as discrimination and harassment.

  2. Jon Pike says:

    Great initiative. Timely too. Academic freedom is essential to a healthy university – and a legal obligation.

  3. Stuart Waiton says:

    Makes me feel I need to get this going at Abertay. Good luck, and if I can help in any way, let me know.

  4. Jim Butcher says:

    We need this in Kent!

  5. Robert Pennington says:

    Excellent initiaive!

  6. Gillian Johnstone says:

    A university that has placed its highest premium on the protection of feelings or safe intellectual space has abandoned its core mission. The protection of feelings or the creation of safe space rightly might be the foremost goal in some settings, like at a family dinner, but it is not right for a university. A university that turns itself into an asylum from controversy has ceased to be a university; it has just become an asylum. (11th Circuit Court of Appeals in the US)

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