Safe Haven

By Allan E. Goodman, James Robin King, and Martha J. Kanter 

The Institute of International Education (IIE) assists threatened scholars and provide them with academic placements and the chance to reclaim their lives by continuing to teach, research, and write.  In 2021, IIE’s Scholar Rescue Fund (IIE-SRF) received more applications than any year in the program’s history. The applications reflected the substantial and mounting challenges scholars are facing worldwide.  

US colleges and universities have long been a safe haven for scholars and students threatened by wars, despots, tyrannical regimes, and calamities. Stanford has hosted eleven IIE-SRF fellows from eight countries and also plans to welcome scholars from Afghanistan.“One of the things that’s really valuable about bringing these scholars to Stanford is that we learn from them,” Jovana Lazić Knežević, associate director of the Center for Russian, East European, and Eurasian Studies at Stanford University, told Stanford Report in March 2021. “We benefit not only from the ideas they bring from different parts of the globe but also from their experiences of what it’s like to live and work in a society that doesn’t afford them the same kind of freedom of thought and expression.”

The IIE-SRF endowment supports a maximum of forty-five annual grants and has awarded on average more than ninety grants per year since 2017. 

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