Position statement—Freedom of movement of scientists

13 February 2017

In light of the Executive Order in the United States of America "Protecting the Nation from Foreign Terrorist Entry into the United States" the Australian Academy of Science (the Academy) reiterates its belief that scientist-to-scientist engagement should transcend racial, cultural, political and religious beliefs, and provide continuing opportunity for nations to engage in harmonious dialogue and co-existence.

Maintaining free movement of scientists promotes active international research collaborations and productive scientific output that is beneficial to any host nation and science as a whole. Such interactions provide an opportunity for diplomatic engagement that can be valuable in promoting harmonious international relations.

The Academy strongly supports the International Council for Science (ICSU) Statute 5 on the Principle of Universality (freedom and responsibility) of science which states:

The Principle of Universality (freedom and responsibility) of Science: the free and responsible practice of science is fundamental to scientific advancement and human and environmental well-being. Such practice, in all its aspects, requires freedom of movement, association, expression and communication for scientists, as well as equitable access to data, information, and other resources for research. It requires responsibility at all levels to carry out and communicate scientific work with integrity, respect, fairness, trustworthiness, and transparency, recognising its benefits and possible harms.

In advocating the free and responsible practice of science, ICSU promotes equitable opportunities for access to science and its benefits, and opposes discrimination based on such factors as ethnic origin, religion, citizenship, language, political or other opinion, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, disability, or age.

© 2017 Australian Academy of Science