IAUPL is a non-governmental, non-political international organisation, which brings together Professors and Lecturers of universities around the world.
IAUPL contributes to the promotion and defence of international Academic Freedom and Peace in societies of progress.
Its general aims are:
- To develop academic fraternity among university teachers across national or faculty borders,
- To protect the independence and freedom of teaching and research, to protect the interests of university teachers,
- To promote and defend their legal, economic and moral status,
- To promoting the 17 Sustainable Development Goals, including SDG4 « Quality Education », SDG8 « Decent Work » of academics, SDG 16 « Peace, justice and Strong Institution » for University, SDG17 « Partnership » with academics,
- To consider academic problems and questions referred either by the association itself or by governments, university authorities, or UNESCO and United Nations (ECOSOC),
- To collaborate with international and governmental bodies competent in university matters.
IAUPL encourages the organisation of symposiums on questions of interest to university teachers and favours contacts between them and university associations worldwide to enable them to confront their experiences, their achievements and their difficulties.
IAUPL wants to develop the visibility of university teachers and of questions touching universities, in the media and national and international bodies.
1944. The International Association of University Professors and Lecturers – IAUPL was created from the merger of two associations of Professors which had developed separately. Indeed, before the Second World War, there existed a movement known as the International University Conference aiming at coordinating the efforts of university teachers. It first came into being at the Oxford Conference, held in 1934, under the aegis of the British Association of University Teachers (A.U.T.). Later, other conferences were held in Grenoble, France (1935), in Heidelberg, Germany (1936), and in Switzerland.
In 1942, Professor S. GLASER, the then president of the Association of Polish University Professors and Lecturers in Great Britain, founded, together with other university professors and science researchers, the Association of University Professors and Lecturers of Allied Countries in Great Britain.
On 11th May 1942, the first general meeting of the Association was held at the Polish Institute in Great-Britain. The members of the first executive committee were elected and the statutes were discussed and agreed on along with the aims presiding over the creation of the Association, namely organising and supporting all university professors and lecturers, and the restoration of freedom and justice in Europe, an essential condition to the development of knowledge, the sciences and the humanities. In the name of academic freedom, it was reasserted that academic research and work had to be freed of any political pressures and ought in the future to be protected from the degradation they had suffered due to totalitarian doctrines.
On 17th July 1942, during the 2nd general meeting, at the Belgian Institute, a telegram was received from King George VI who congratulated and approved of the new association. All members declared they supported their colleagues, victims of the Nazi oppression which was trying to annihilate all intellectual life in occupied countries. Also, the association committed itself to making sure universities and other places of knowledge would be rebuilt.
On 16th December 1942, the third general meeting allowed for the assignment of a subject of research to each member of the association in accordance with the above-mentioned aims. The fourth general meeting, held in Oxford from 16th to 18th July 1943, concerned itself with the safeguarding of intellectual and artistic life in Europe. The association statutes, aims and responsibilities were further specified.
In 1944, the Association of University Professors and Lecturers of Allied Countries in Great Britain contemplated continuing and developing its activities after the war. So, IAUPL was born during a joint meeting of the Association and the International University Conference.
One of the founding members of this new association was Pr. René Cassin who co-authored the Universal Declaration of Human Rights adopted by the United Nations General Assembly on 10 December 1948 and was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1968.
In 1947, IAUPL was put on the list of NGOs working with UNESCO. On 14th December 1966, it was admitted as a member of the conference of NGOs with consultative status with the United Nations Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC).
Since the end of the Second World War and the creation of IAUPL, the role that the organisation set for itself has been to facilitate exchanges between university teachers at an international level. Thus, IAUPL organises on a regular basis round tables, symposiums and meetings which aim, on the one hand, at enabling teachers to meet and exchange about their practises, their methods and their working conditions, but, on the other hand, at fostering the debate on the role of universities within the societies of these countries and in so doing at enabling key actors in higher education to improve their academic system. These capacities of witness and academic actor were the reasons why UNESCO proposed to set up a partnership with IAUPL.
IAUPL organised, the First International Seminar on the status of university teachers, in Vienna on the borders of Eastern Europe in September 1965. In the context of the time, the question was particularly sensitive.
In May 1982, in Sienna, the different and successive studies conducted by IAUPL and the regular meetings it fostered gave birth to the “declaration of rights and duties inherent in academic freedom”.
1979 – 1992: Studies on the evolution of the status of university professors and lecturers. In 1989, IAUPL helped creating the UNESCO/NGO Collective Consultation on Higher Education.
In 1997, IAUPL helped drafting the « Recommendation concerning the Status of Higher Education Teaching Personnel » which was adopted by UNESCO’s General Conference. It is currently following its implementation and is working for its improvement.
In 1998 and 2022, IAUPL participated in the World Conference on Higher Education.
Likewise, between 1979 and 2000, IAUPL organised a number of round tables and discussion seminars on the evolution of the status of university teachers. The end of the Cold War and the Fall of the Berlin Wall and, as a consequence, of the communist bloc, gave IAUPL the opportunity to open out to Eastern European countries.
On 3rd October 2003, the 139th session of IAUPL’s executive committee was held at the Université Paris-Panthéon in France. In the same year, IAUPL attended the Follow-up Conference of the World Conference at UNESCO. In October 2005, the 33rd session of UNESCO’s General Conference considered guidelines on Quality Provision in CrossBorder Higher Education. IAUPL followed the debates and work sessions of UNESCO on the question.
IAUPL members took an active part in the 38th, 40th and 41th UNESCO General Conference and the International Conference of NGOs (ICNGOs). The association ran in the NGO Liaison Committee elections and proposed an amendment regarding « … the professional development of teacher researchers with recognition of their professional and academic qualifications… » so as to complete the education component; the proposition was adopted by the ICNGOs on 14th December 2016, as a Contribution of the 2016 International Conference of NGOs to UNESCO’s 39 C/5 with a view to preparing the 39th General Conference of UNESCO (2017).
IAUPL intervened in the 6th International Forum of NGOs (in official partnership with UNESCO) in Querétaro (Mexico) in November 2016 and brought up the role of academics in the building of peace: «Academic Diplomacy and peace-building». As of now, IAUPL intends to intervene in the different Forums which will be organised by UNESCO and its institutional partners/members (Riadh, Saoudi Arabia, 2017 ; Tunis, Tunisia 2018, Paris, 2020 and 2022).
IAUPL is an observer at the Intergovermental Conference of United Nations for adoption of Global Compact for Migration in Marrakech, Maroc 2018. IAUPL participates in the HLPF UN-ECOSOC Forum in July 2019 ( New-York) and defends the position of quality education for a Zero Draft Declaration of the 2019 SDG Summit.
In 2021 IAUPL intervenes as an Observer at intergovernmental meetings concerning the « Recommendation on the Ethics of Artificial Intelligence » (UNESCO) and proposes to include « Academic Freedom » in this normative document. Tunisia and Austria support IAUPL’s observation and propose the amendment in paragraph 102 of the « AI Ethics Recommendation » with the agreement of UNESCO Member States.
With support from UNESCO and within the framework of the Participation Program granted, IAUPL is organizing a Conference in March 2022: « Academic mobility and university teaching for the development of Africa » for the promotion of the Global Convention 2019 on the Recognition of Qualifications concerning Higher Education (UNESCO).
STATEMENTS: Statement to United Nation Intergovernmental Conference on the Global Compact for Migration, 09 -11 December 2018, Marrakech, Morocco ( special observer NGO accredited ).
Statements to United Nation – High-level Political Forum HLPF in July 2019, July 2020 and July 2022.
GOVERNANCE and BODIES
The Central Council
The highest authority in IAUPL is, as it were, the General Assembly of the Association. It is composed of representatives designated by the national member associations. As a meeting of all the members of the organisation, the purpose of the central council is to take positions on important questions touching the academic world at an international level.
The executive Committee
This “Administrative Board” is made up of 11 members among whom are:
- Secretary general, ▪ Deputy secretary general, ▪ Treasurer.
9 members are elected by the Central Council and one is co-opted with a view to obtaining a better-balanced geographical representation.
As of 1st January 2023:
President: Pr. Jean-Louis Charlet (France)
-Pr. Predrag Djordjevic (Serbia)
-Pr. Mohamed Mahassine (Morocco)
Secretary General: Pr. Michel Gay (France)
Treasurer : Pr. Pierre Dehombreux (Belgium)
Dr. Oleg Curbatov, Permanent Representative on UNESCO and United Nation, Deputy secretary general.