The first SAR scholarship holder in Poland is in Krakow
At the beginning of December 2020, the Villa Decius Institute for Culture accepted the first SAR scholarship holder in Poland - prof. Candan Badem.
The Villa Decius Institute for Culture in cooperation with the Jagiellonian University in Krakow, on the basis of the agreement of July 20, 2020, started the implementation of the Residence Program, as part of the international network Scholars at Risk (SAR). At the beginning of December 2020, the Villa Decius Institute for Culture accepted the first SAR scholarship holder in Poland - prof. Candan Badem - a famous Turkish historian who has suffered repressions in recent years due to a wave of layoffs at universities.
“I am thankful to the Scholars at Risk network for its support to persecuted, displaced or otherwise repressed academics all over the world. I am very happy to be in the beautiful city of Krakow. I plan to continue my research here and to engage in scholarly exchange with Polish scholars. If possible, I also want to do research in Polish archives. I am grateful to the Jagiellonian University and to Villa Decius Institute for Culture for this opportunity" - said prof. Badem after his arrival at the Villa Decius.
Prof. Candan Badem, unable to safely continue his work and research activities in Turkey, received aid under the Scholars at Risk program. Support and shelter for the persecuted scientist were provided by the Villa Decius Institute for Culture, the city of Krakow and the Jagiellonian University in Krakow.
"Krakow is an open city, a city of freedom of speech and artistic freedom. For many years, we have also been a city of refuge for persecuted artists, and for a decade we have belonged to the prestigious ICORN network, on the Board of Directors of which our representative sits. The role of a city of refuge obliges us to create favorable conditions for freedom of speech, artistic expression and forms of expression. We implement this idea in cooperation with Krakow cultural institutions and academic centers. That is why I am glad that Villa Decius is a natural asylum for creators, writers, artists in residence, and the cooperation between the city - the Villa Decius Institute for Culture - the Jagiellonian University implements such an important idea of freedom of art and science" - emphasizes Jacek Majchrowski, Mayor of the City of Krakow.
The Turkish historian was welcomed into the university community by the Rector of the Jagiellonian University, Prof. Jacek Popiel: "I am glad that this important project supporting scientists is implemented in practice. Our first scholarship holder - prof. Candan Badem, a specialist in the field of humanities - welcome to the Jagiellonian University and wish you a fruitful stay and successful cooperation with our academic community".
The scholarship stay will last until April 2021. During this time, prof. Badem will have the opportunity to continue his scientific work and establish cooperation with other researchers, not only from the University of Krakow, but also from the international community. This aspect is emphasized by prof. Beata Kowalska, Ombudsman for Academic Rights and Values (representative of the Jagiellonian University in SAR) - "the quality of our research depends on an open, unfettered, critical scientific debate, stimulated by the multitude of ideas and perspectives as well as awareness of the university's social responsibility. Authoritarian governments often strike at the autonomy of science. I am proud that the Jagiellonian University is the first university in the country to host a SAR scholarship holder."
"We are happy to host the first scholarship holder of the international SAR network in Poland. Cooperation with this organization was initiated by Villa Decius in 2017, during an international conference on academic freedom. After three years, thanks to the involvement of the Jagiellonian University, the cooperation entered a new phase - we host prof. Candan Badem. This is another residency program implemented by Villa Decius. We are glad that Professor Badem is safe in Krakow and that we can support him in continuing his scientific work". - says Dominika Kasprowicz, Director of the Villa Decius Institute for Culture.
Candan Badem (born 1970) - Turkish scientist, historian. In 2001 he obtained a master’s degree in Russian Philology and East European Studies from the University of Birmingham in Great Britain. In 2007, he earned his PhD in the history of the Ottoman wars at the Sabancı University in Istanbul. For eight years he lectured at the university, giving translation courses in Russian, cultural history, and history of central Turkish Asia. He has participated in numerous international conferences and scientific symposia. He is the author of a number of scientific articles and the editor of publications on the Ottoman Empire and the Caucasus. He conducted research on the history of Turkey in the state archives of Great Britain, Armenia, Georgia and Germany. In 2009, he was the first Turkish historian to be admitted to the collection of the National Archives of Armenia in Yerevan. He is fluent in Russian and English.
In 2016, Prof. Candan Badem signed a public petition calling on the Turkish authorities to resume dialogue with factions in the south-eastern part of the country. The Turkish government accused the signatories of the petition of treason and promoting terrorism as well as insulting Turkey's good name. In August 2016, by government decree, prof. Badem was banned from all public universities and government offices. In February 2019, the scientist was found guilty and sentenced to almost two years in prison. Travel restrictions have also been imposed on him, valid until August 22, 2020.
Unable to safely pursue his work and research activities in Turkey while seeking research and teaching opportunities in a safe place, prof. Badem received assistance under the international program Scholars at Risk. The Villa Decius Institute for Culture, the city of Krakow and the Jagiellonian University provided support and shelter to the persecuted scientist.
Scholars at Risk (SAR) Network
Scholars at Risk Network is an international network of academic institutions and individuals with a mission to protect persecuted members of the university community and to promote academic freedom. By organizing temporary workplaces in partner institutions, SAR ensures the safety of at-risk academics, also provides advisory services to scientists and host institutions, organizes campaigns for imprisoned or repressed researchers, and monitors attacks on the academic community around the world. Last year alone, more than 580 scientists sought help, 115 of them were placed in universities around the world. There are 507 universities, colleges and associations in 39 countries. The Jagiellonian University and the Villa Decius Institute for Culture were the first to join the network, and so far as the only ones in Poland.