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Birgitta Bergvall-Kåreborn
Birgitta Bergvall-Kåreborn View original picture , opens in new tab/window

Luleå University of Technology signs the Magna Charta Universitatum

Published: 7 April 2020

900 universities from 88 different countries have signed the Declaration on Academic Freedom and the University's role in society. This year, it is Luleå University of Technology's turn.

In 1988, when the University of Bologna celebrated its 900th anniversary, the Magna Charta Universitatum, an international declaration on academic freedom and institutional autonomy, was added as guidelines for good governance and understanding of the university's role. The purpose is to highlight the deep values that exist in university traditions and encourage strong links between universities.

In 1988, 388 rectors and principals from universities signed the Magna Charta Universitatum, which is regarded as the European University's Declaration of Rights. Since then, a large number of universities from all over the world have joined, as Luleå University of Technology now does.

For Luleå University of Technology, a signature means that it clearly shows that the university stands for values and principles regarding academic freedom. Pro Vice-Chancellor Pär Weihed believes that in some other countries there are tendencies for politics to control the facts that come from the universities. Therefore, he thinks it is a matter of course to sign the declaration and show that Luleå University of Technology stands for the university's autonomy and freedom from political control of what research results may be disseminated.

Birgitta Bergvall-Kåreborn, Vice-Chancellor of Luleå University of Technology, believes that a university is and must be an organization that develops and disseminates knowledge, and that makes it important to have autonomy.

- Luleå University of Technology is driving both in terms of identifying and highlighting social challenges, but also in developing new knowledge and solutions. Autonomy, freedom in research and education as well as international mobility and collaboration opportunities are crucial in order for higher education institutions to be able to carry out your assignments effectively and with high quality.