2022-02-28

Solidarity with partners in Ukraine – consequences for science and the humanities

Statement of the Alliance of Science Organisations in Germany on the attack on Ukraine

The Alliance of German Science Organisations strongly supports the Federal Government’s consistent action against Russia's belligerent attack on Ukraine, which is in violation of international law.

Flags of Ukraine and the European Union in front of a blue sky.© Pavlo Vakhrushev / Adobe Stock The Alliance regards the Russian invasion as an attack on the fundamental values of freedom, democracy and self-determination, which in turn provide the basis for academic freedom and opportunities for academic cooperation.

The organisations of the Alliance have long maintained diverse and productive academic collaborations with their partners in Ukraine. They have our full solidarity at this moment! In this spirit, we are determined to continue to pursue our contacts and close cooperation with our Ukrainian partners at all levels, in student exchanges as well as in the promotion of bilateral research projects and the development and use of academic infrastructures. Students and academics who have to leave their country as a result of Russian aggression will be offered support under wide-ranging assistance programmes.

The Alliance of Science Organisations will discuss further steps in this crisis situation in close consultation with each other as well as with the Federal Government and other political decisionmakers. Decisions must then be made by the individual organisations or member institutions.

Even at this stage, however, it is recommend that academic cooperation with state institutions and business enterprises in Russia be frozen with immediate effect until further notice, that German research funds no longer benefit Russia, and that no joint events take place of an academic nature or those pertaining to research policy. New cooperation projects should not be initiated at the present time.

The Alliance is aware of the consequences of these measures and at the same time deeply regrets them for science. Many research projects have been planned to take place over a period of several years and are massively affected by the current war situation. We live in a multidimensional world, and only by means of close international academic cooperation can the crises facing humanity, such as climate change, species extinction or infectious diseases, be overcome.

For this reason, our solidarity also goes out to our long-standing Russian cooperation partners and scholars who are themselves horrified at Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

The Alliance of Science Organisation

The Alliance of Science Organisations is an association of the most important academic organisations in Germany. It regularly comments on important issues of science policy. The German Research Foundation is a member of the Alliance and is the lead institution for 2022. Other members are the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation, the German Academic Exchange Service, the Fraunhofer Society, the Helmholtz Association, the German Rectors’ Conference, the Leibniz Association, the Max Planck Society, the German National Academy of Sciences Leopoldina and the German Council of Science and Humanities.

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