The New University in Exile Consortium Releases 2022-2023 Annual Report

The Consortium added 16 new member organizations and programs to support Ukrainian scholars and Afghan artists

New York, July 27, 2023—The New University in Exile Consortium (NUIEC) recently released its 2022-2023 Annual Report highlighting the Consortium’s increased efforts to address the needs of exiled and endangered scholars, students, and artists impacted by war, political, ethnic and religious persecution, and other international emergencies around the world. During the year, the Consortium expanded its programming to alleviate the isolation and displacement experienced by exiled scholars and provide opportunities for them to connect with each other and the global academic community. 

Since 2021, the Consortium has expanded its mission to include finding safe academic placements for scholars, students and artists, primarily from Afghanistan, where the need is enormous. Today Consortium member institutions are hosting more than 30 threatened Afghan scholars and 900 Afghan students, a majority of whom are women.
“With the continued deterioration of Afghanistan under the Taliban, and the horrors of the ongoing war in Ukraine, among other international emergencies occurring around the world, many scholars are in exile and are experiencing a profound sense of dislocation and loneliness that adversely impacts their intellectual and personal lives,” says Arien Mack, NUIEC founder and director and Alfred and Monette Marrow Professor of Psychology Emeritus at The New School. “Our network has come together to address a multitude of issues, provide much needed resources, and create a vibrant, collegial, and intellectual online community for participating scholars.”
Since 2022, NUIEC has added 16 member organizations, the report notes, including universities in four new countries—Bangladesh, Ireland, Sweden, and Spain. In the five years since the consortium launched in 2018, it has grown from a small group of 11 universities and colleges in the Northeast United States to a 68-member global collaborative spanning North America, Europe, Africa, the Middle East, and Asia.
NUIEC programs are designed to foster discussions around global threats to academic freedom, the value of free inquiry, and the future of higher education and scholarship, and provide opportunities and tools for collaborative research among scholars. The report details several key initiatives from the 2022-2023 year, including:

  • University in Exile for Afghan Artists, which plans to bring 10 endangered Afghan artists on 1-year fellowships to the programs and divisions in the arts at The New School in New York City. This year, the program welcomed its inaugural fellows:
    • Ahmad Fanoos, a renowned Afghan vocalist, harmonium and tabla player, is the first University in Exile for Afghan Artists fellow. He is being hosted by the Mannes School of Music in the College of Performing Arts at The New School.
    • Sahraa Karimi, an acclaimed filmmaker who has enjoyed international success in her career as a screenwriter, director, and professor. She is the first woman ever to head Afghan Films as its Director-General, and the founder of her own film production company, Kapila Multimedia House, which supports independent Afghan filmmakers and artists.
  • Assistance for Ukrainian Students and Scholars, which provided a substantial gift to the Kharkiv Karazin University Foundation to enable faculty and students to continue their work at the university. Two-hundred laptops were donated by Siemens to Karazin University in Ukraine. In addition, consortium member institutions are currently hosting over 20 Ukrainian academics and a number of Ukrainian students.
  • Twelve Consortium scholars participated as panelists and moderators at the Annual Scholars' Conference, "The Plight of Women and Minorities under Authoritarian Regimes". The Conference garnered a large in-person and online audience and featured U.S. Special Envoy for Afghan Women, Girls, and Human Rights, Rina Amiri, as the keynote.
  • Consortium Scholars published over 75 works, appeared in over 110 public lectures, panels, and presentations, and taught more than 25 university courses.

“As restrictions on academic freedom, threats to intellectual life and scholarship, and the actual destruction of university facilities continue to increase, the institutions and scholar-members of the New University in Exile Consortium will work steadfastly together to do all we can to protect and nurture scholars forced into exile and the rich intellectual resources they represent,” said Mack.

Established in September 2018, the New University in Exile Consortium follows in the tradition of The New School’s original University in Exile created by The New School’s first President, Alvin Johnson, in 1933. The first University in Exile became the home of rescued, largely Jewish endangered scholars from Germany and France. Today, members of the New University in Exile Consortium are hosting more than 150 exiled scholars from 24 countries.

Founded in 1919, The New School was established to advance academic freedom, tolerance, and experimentation. A century later, The New School remains at the forefront of innovation in higher education, inspiring approximately 10,000 undergraduate and graduate students to challenge the status quo in design and the social sciences, liberal arts, management, the arts, and media. The university welcomes thousands of adult learners annually for continuing education courses and public programs that encourage open discourse and social engagement. Through our online learning portals, research institutes, and international partnerships, The New School maintains a global presence.


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Media Contacts:

The New School
Merrie Snead
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