News & events


CODESRIA International Conference

09 March 2010

Start :

09 March 2010

End :

11 March 2010


The Council for the Development of Social Science Research in Africa (CODESRIA) is pleased to announce the organisation of an international conference titled Academic Freedom and the Social Responsibility of Academics and Researchers in Africa: What are the new challenges?

This conference comes within the framework of CODESRIA’s Academic Freedom Programme. It is aimed at taking stock of the progress of academic freedom in Africa over the last three decades, assessing the status of the fundamental rights of citizens in African countries and looking at the prospects that seem to emerge. This meeting is organised for the community of academics and researchers in Africa and the Diaspora, with particular interest in the issues of academic freedom. It will be held in 2010 from 9 to11 March in Oran, Algeria.

Background info on CODESRIA’s Academic Freedom Programme

The Academic Freedom and Human Rights Programme has been established in CODESRIA since the early ‘90s. The initiatives developed have enabled it to be at the forefront of the fights that are being conducted for nearly two decades now for the defence of academic freedom and the social responsibility of African academics and researchers.

The starting point of this programme was the adoption of the Kampala Declaration (Uganda) in November 1990 which states that, among other things, “Every African intellectual has the right to pursue intellectual activity, including teaching, research and dissemination of research results, without let or hindrance subject only to universally recognised principles of scientific enquiry and ethical and professional standards”. Since the Kampala Conference, CODESRIA has developed a great deal of activities, including support to research, the publication of research results and the regular organisation of conferences in African countries to discuss and review the constraints and progress relating to the issues of academic freedom in African universities. These conferences were often an opportunity to review the reforms undertaken or undergone over the last two decades by African higher education and research institutions.

Since the Kampala Declaration, the debate on issues pertaining to academic freedom has been prevailing in academic circles, and its importance no longer needs to be demonstrated within the African academic and research community. However, the debate on the concept of Academic Freedom or its content is still topical. While some advocate a return to more orthodox and restrictive approach/definition of academic freedom, defining it as a right and a duty that must be exercised in the university space, others apprehend academic freedom as a concept related to the exercise of citizenship and, consequently, in a perspective of defense of the freedom of expression of citizens. The question is then posed to know which option is the more relevant in the African context.

Would you like to participate? 

People wishing to participate in this conference must send to CODESRIA the abstract of their communication on the general theme of the conference. Abstracts should be e-mailed to the CODESRIA Secretariat by January 15, 2010 at the latest. They should include the title, the author’s contact information and affiliation, and should not exceed one page written in 12 points “Times New Roman” font, single spacing. An independent selection committee will review the applications and the selected authors will be invited to submit the final version of their communication for the conference by February 15, 2010 at the latest. The selected candidates’ participation fees will be covered in accordance with the procedures and scale fixed by CODESRIA

The abstract proposals, final communications and possible questions should be sent to:


Programme sur Liberté académique et droits humains

Avenue Cheikh Anta Diop x Canal IV

BP : 3304, CP : 18524, Dakar, Sénégal