We note that Matthew's imprisonment came at a time when European and North American institutions are actively seeking to broaden their reach overseas by opening satellite campuses. UK universities have bought into this 'internationalisation' agenda enthusiastically as part of a wider drive to marketise higher education. But in so doing we are sacrificing our core values of academic freedom and human rights for the sake of profit and student numbers. This has to stop.
This letter also follows the motion passed by University of Birmingham UCU calling on staff to refuse to carry out work for the University's new Dubai campus unless specified in their contract as a result of deep concerns over the safeguarding of staff and students, and the lack of transparency over the use of forced migrant labour. University of Birmingham UNISON has also voted overwhelmingly to consider a ballot for industrial action over concerns that specifically include the Dubai campus. We call on staff at other institutions to bring similar motions to address the neo-colonial practices of their institutions overseas.
Those of us outside University of Birmingham pledge to follow the lead taken by our colleagues there in refusing or resigning from voluntary roles associated with UoB Dubai such as external examiner posts, visiting lectureships and journal board memberships, until existing issues of safeguarding LGBTQ rights, ensuring academic freedoms and the abuse of migrant labour have been fully addressed.
In writing this letter we insist that senior management in UK universities listen to the concerns voiced by staff and work positively and constructively with the academic community, trade unions and human rights organisations to ensure that the expansion of UK higher education institutions overseas does not mean complicity in abuses of human rights or violations of academic freedoms.
Emeritus Professor, Jane Aaron, Retired, University of South WalesDr Anne Alexander, CRASSH, University of CambridgeRevd David Allen, Associate Chaplain, City, University of LondonDr Paul Anderson, Reader, University of BirminghamJenny Aster, Co-Chair LGBT+ Staff Network, City, University of London Dr William Astle, University Lecturer, Cambridge UniversityDr Grietje Baars, Senior Lecturer in Law, City, University of LondonDr Jana Bacevic, Research Associate, University of CambridgeDr Stephen Bates, Senior Lecturer in Political Science, University of BirminghamDr Shereen Benjamin, University of EdinburghDr Michael Berthaume, Research Associate, Imperial College LondonMs Vicky Blake, President, Uni of Leeds UCU, UCU National Executive Committee, University of Leeds Mrs Cecily Blyther, Additional Learning Support Tutor, PetrocDr Hannah Boast, Teaching Fellow, University of BirminghamMs Clelia Boscolo, Lecturer, University of BirminghamMr Matt Dumas-Bowden, Courses Officer, Unison & LGBT Activist, City, University of LondonDr Vincent Boyer, Senior Lecturer, University of BirminghamJames Brackley, Lecturer in Accounting, University of Birmingham, President of Birmingham UCUProfessor Bob Brecher, Professor of Moral Philosophy, University of BrightonProfessor Jo Brewis, The Open UniversityAlexander Brune, PhD student, University of BirminghamDr Gareth Carrol, Lecturer in Psycholinguistics, University of BirminghamDr Courtney J. Campbell, Lecturer in Latin American History, University of BirminghamDr Marco Castellani, Lecturer, University of BirminghamPaola Ceccarelli, Lecturer, Department of History, University College LondonIoana Cerasella Chis, Chair of University of Birmingham UNISON branch, University of BirminghamJohn Chalcraft, Professor of Middle East History and Politics, LSEProfessor Nic Cheeseman, Professor of Democracy, University of BirminghamSimon Choat, Senior Lecturer in Politics, Kingston UniversityMr Francis Clarke, Web Marketing and Communications Officer, Communications Officer of Birmingham UCU, University of BirminghamProfessor of European Industrial Relations, Linda Clarke, Co-Director ProBE research centre, University of WestminsterMrs Alison Clifton, REF Development Officer, Lancaster UniversityMrs Anne Cockayne, Lecturer, NTUProfessor Bill Cooke, Chair in Strategic Management, University of YorkDr Laurence Cooley, Research Fellow, University of BirminghamDr Alison Cooper, Senior Lecturer, University of BirminghamDr Sandra Cortijo, SLCUDr Rona Cran, Lecturer in Twentieth Century American Literature, University of BirminghamLinda Cronin, Senior Lecturer, University of RoehamptonMs Melany Cruz, Committee Member BUCU, University of BirminghamMs Caroline Curtis, PhD candidate, University of BirminghamDr James Cussens, Senior Lecturer, University of YorkDr Rohit K Dasgupta, Lecturer and Programme Director in Global Communication and Development, Loughborough UniversityAndrew Day, Learning and Teaching Librarian, UCADr Ben Davies, Senior Lecturer in English Literature, University of PortsmouthMs Jennifer Davies, Postgraduate Research Student, University of BirminghamAnna Dawson, University of BirminghamDr Tyler Denmead, University Lecturer of Arts and Creativity in Education, Faculty of Education, University of EducationMr Elio Di Muccio, Doctoral Candidate, University of Birmingham, Secretary, University of Birmingham UCU, University of BirminghamProfessor James Dickins, Prof. of Arabic, University of LeedsProfessor Carole Elliott, Professor of HRD, Roehampton UniversitySarah Elton, Professor of Evolutionary Anthropology, University of Durham and President, Durham UCUDr Elizabeth Evans, Senior Lecturer in Politics, GoldsmithsMrs Kim Fawcett, Graduate Tutor, Teesside UniversityProfessor Natalie Fenton, Goldsmiths, University of LondonMiss Rachel Fisher, Doctoral Researcher, University of BirminghamGeorgina Fitzgibbon, PhD candidate, University of BirminghamDr Kirsten Forkert, Reader, School of Media, Birmingham City UniversityProfessor Marianna Fotaki, Professor of Business Ethics, Warwick University, Warwick Business SchoolDr Mariana Galante, University of Cambridge Dr Sol Gamsu, Postdoc, University of BathProfessor Mary Godwyn, Professor of Sociology, Babson CollegeDr Emily Grabham, Professor of Law, University of Kent Dr Alan Greene, Senior Lecturer, Birmingham Law SchoolDr Melanie Griffiths, Birmingham Fellow, University of BirminghamDr Simon Grimble, Associate Professor, Durham UniversityDr Dave Grover, Snr Lecturer, Teesside University Professor Irena Grugulis, Professor of Work and Skills, University of LeedsNick Hardy, Pensions Officer, University of Birmingham UCUDr Zhang He, Senior Lecturer, Teesside University Dr Julie Hearn, Lancaster UCU Equality Officer, NEC member, Lancaster UniversityDr Karla Hemming, University of BirminghamDr Marion Hersh, Senior lecturer in engineering, UCU NECDr Steve Hewitt, Senior Lecturer, University of BirminghamMr Nicholas Hilken, BCTU Programming Team, University of BirminghamDr Rupert Hildyard, Principal Lecturer in English, University of LincolnDr Simon Hodgkinson, Research Fellow, University of BirminghamDr Richard House, Clinical Tutor, Teesside University Ms Sorcha Hughes, Student, University of BirminghamDr Richard Hull, Programme Director, MA Social Entrepreneurship, Goldsmiths, University of LondonNicholas Hunter, University of BirminghamDr Sara Jabbari, Senior Lecturer, University of BirminghamKathy Jackson, Sn Lecturer, Teesside University Dr Simon Jackson, Lecturer, University of BirminghamDr Laura Jenkins, Lecturer, University of BirminghamDr Tom Montenegro-Johnson, Lecturer in Applied Mathematics, University of BirminghamDr Carol Jones, Reader, School of Law, University of BirminghamDr Henry Jones, Assistant Professor, Law, DurhamMx Ollie Jones, MRes Pure Mathematics, University of BirminghamDr Lee Jones, Reader in International Politics, Queen Mary University of LondonProfessor Clive Jones, Professor of Regional Security, Durham UniversityTom de Jong, PhD candidate, University of BirminghamSarah Joss, UCU Membership Officer, Heriot-Watt UniversityDr Nicki Kindersley, Harry F Guggenheim Research Fellow, Pembroke College, University of CambridgeMr Antony Kotsampaseris, PhD student, University of BirminghamDr Hendrik Kraetzschmar, Associate Professor in Middle East Politics, University of LeedsDr Andrew Kozhevnikov, Lecturer in HRM, Coventry UniversityAmanda Latimer, Lecturer, Kingston UniversityProfessor Dennis Leech, Emeritus Academic, University of WarwickDr Robert Leek, Lecturer, School of Mathematics, University of BirminghamDr Glenn Lees, Teaching Fellow, University of BirminghamMs Sasha Lindsay, Cass Undergraduate Course Officer, City University of LondonProfessor Judi Loach, Professor emerita, Dept of History, Cardiff University Dr Daniel Loghin, Lecturer, University of BirminghamDr Anne Van Loon, Senior Lecturer Water Science, University of BirminghamProfessor Michael Loughlin, Professor of Applied Philosophy, University of West LondonDr Pam Lowe, Senior Lecturer, Aston UniversityMr Darcy Luke, Membership Officer BUCU, University of BirminghamMalcolm MacLean, Reader, School of Sport & Exercise, University of GloucestershireDr Elisavet Mantzari, Lecturer, University of BirminghamLuke Martell, University of SussexDr Jose Martinez, Junior Research Fellow, Trinity College, University of CambridgeDr Mazen Masri, Senior Lecturer, City, University of LondonDr Sagi Mathew, Lecturer, RMIT UniversityMarian Mayer, Senior Lecturer, Co-chair Bournemouth UCU Chair South Region UCU, Bournemouth University Dr William McEvoy, Senior Lecturer in Drama and English, University of SussexDr Charlie McGuire, Senior Lecturer in History, Teesside University Ms Tara MCINERNEY, Senior Lecturer in Comics and Illustration, Teesside UniversityJo McNeill, President, University of Liverpool UCU & NECAngus McNelly, PhD Candidate, Queen Mary University of LondonDr Kevin McSorley, Senior Lecturer in Sociology, University of PortsmouthDr Kevin Moloney, Research Fellow, Bournemouth UniversityDr Bethan Morgan, Teaching Associate, Faculty of Education, University of CambridgeDr Lydia Morgan, Research Fellow, University of BirminghamDr Nick Morgan, Latin American Studies, Newcastle UniversityPhilip Moriarty, Professor of Physics and Undergraduate Admissions Tutor, University of NottinghamMiss Jerry Morrison, TeacherMr Daniel Muddimer, Student, University of BirminghamProfessor Clement Mouhot, University of CambridgeJuergen Munz, Heriot-Watt UniversityDr Angie Murray, Research Fellow, University of BirminghamDr Hannah Murray, Teaching Fellow, King's College LondonProfessor Alistair Mutch, Professor of Information and Learning, Nottingham Trent UniversityMiss Piangfan Naksukpaiboon, Early Stage Researcher, Queen's University BelfastDr Kate Nichols, Birmingham Fellow, University of Birmingham Professor Aoife O'Donoghue, Durham UniversityCatherine Oliver, PhD student, University of BirminghamDermot O'Reilly, Senior Lecturer, Lancaster UniversityMr Ryan Ottridge, University of BirminghamWilliam Outhwaite, Emeritus Professor of Sociology, Newcastle UniversityMr Marcel Llavero Pasquina, Member of University Council and PhD Candidate, University of CambridgeRose Brayne Patterson, Student, University of BirminghamProfessor Michael Pirson, Fordham UniversityProfessor Megan Povey, Professor of Food Physics, University of LeedsDr Laura Povoledo, Senior lecturer in economics, UWE BristolDr Nicola Pratt, Reader of the International Politics of the Middle East, University of WarwickDr Sian Preece, Associate Professor, UCL Institute of EducationDr Nat Queen, Research Fellow, University of BirminghamProfessor Muireann Quigley, Professor of Law, Medicine, & Technology, University of BirminghamDr Matias Ramirez, Senior lecturer, University of SussexDr Paulina Ramirez, Lecturer in Innovation and International Business, University of BirminghamProfessor Brian Rappert, University of ExeterProfessor Keith Reader, Visiting Emeritus Professor, University of London Institute in ParisDr Thomas Renstrom, Associate Professor, Durham University Business SchoolMr Paul Reynolds, Reader in Sociology and Social Philosophy, Edge Hill UniversityDr James Richards, Associate Professor in HRM, Heriot-Watt UniversityDr David Roberts, Application Operations Team Leader, University of BirminghamMr Paul Robinson, Graduate Tutor/PhD Researcher, Teesside UniversityLeon Rocha, Lecturer in History, University of LiverpoolJonathan Rosenhead, Emeritus Professor of Operational Research, London School of EconomicsMr Sean Rowlands, Research Support Officer, City, University of London Nita Sanghera, UCU Vice President, SCCB Bournville CollegeProfessor Jennifer Saul, Professor of Philosophy, University of SheffieldMr Cameron Seyers, Student, University of BirminghamDr Bethany Simmonds, Senior Lecturer, University of PortsmouthDr Ruth Elizabeth Slater, Senior Lecturer and Course Leader, University of Central LancashireProfessor Peter Slater, Professor of Materials Chemistry, University of BirminghamRoddy Slorach, UCU branch organiser, Imperial College LondonBarry Smart, Professor of Sociology, University of PortsmouthMrs Caroline Smith, Database Administrator, University of BirminghamJoel Smith, Senior Lecturer, University of ManchesterLesley Smitheringale, Senior Lecturer Accounting and Finance, Teesside University Dr Samuel Solomon, Senior Lecturer, University of SussexMr Siddharth Soni, PhD Candidate, University of CambridgeDr Mark Summerfield, University of BirminghamDr Meg Tait, Head of CCTL, University of CambridgeDr Giuliana Tiripelli Dr Katherine Tonkiss, Senior Lecturer, Aston UniversityEmeritus Professor, Richard Tuckett, Professor of Chemistry, University of BirminghamUnis Resist Border Controls (URBC)Professor Martin Upchurch, Professor of International Employment Relations, Middlesex University Business School, London, UKDr Emma Unwin, Research Fellow, University of BirminghamDr Emma Wagstaff, Senior Lecturer, University of Birmingham Sean Wallis, Principal Research Fellow, UCU Branch President and NEC member, University College LondonDr Ben Warwick, Lecturer in Law, University of BirminghamTamsin Waterhouse, Lecturer, University of BirminghamDr Rob Waters, Lecturer in Modern British History, University of BirminghamFreya Watkins, Teaching Associate & Doctoral Researcher, University of BirminghamDr Steven Watson, Lecturer, Faculty of Education, University of CambridgeDr Sanne Weber, Research Fellow, University of BirminghamDr Se-shauna Wheatle, Associate Professor in Law, Durham UniversityDr David White, Lecturer in Political Science, University of BirminghamProfessor John Williams, Professor of International Relations, Durham UniversityProfessor Hugh Willmott, Professor of Management, Cass Business School City University of LondonDr Rose Whyman, Senior Lecturer, University of BirminghamDr Marion Winters, Senior Lecturer, Heriot-Watt UniversityDr Maria Witek, Senior Birmingham Fellow, University of Birmingham
*This letter will be offered to the media for publication and will be shared online. Please leave your email address if you would like the organisers to contact you with updates about this campaign. Unless otherwise stated, all signatures are in a personal capacity.*