Anas Al Khabour, one of the researchers at risk that has been hosted at the University of Gothenburg
Anas Al Khabour is one of the researchers from the SAR network that the University of Gothenburg has hosted.
Photo: Johan Wingborg

Scholars at Risk

Scholars at Risk (SAR) is an international network of more than 500 higher education institutions in 40 countries, dedicated to promoting academic freedom around the world. The network gives sanctuary to scholars who are unable to work in their home countries.

The aim of Scholars at Risk is to promote and protect academic freedom, and to offer protection to scholars who are threatened, persecuted or in risk of being censored. Every year, more than a hundred researchers are placed at foreign institutions.

First Swedish university to host SAR Scholars

In the autumn of 2015, the University of Gothenburg became the first Swedish higher education institution to host SAR scholars. Until now, six SAR-scholars have been hosted at the university. The scholars are employed by the departments that match their respective research fields, for a period of one year, and are engaged in the regular research activities at their host departments.

Coordinating Swedish section

The University of Gothenburg coordinates SAR – Sweden, which consists of around 30 members; Swedish higher education institutions, academies of science, research institutions and labour unions.


SAR-Sweden is also a partner in the project Inspireurope, a platform aiming to increase the employment of researchers and increase the number of researchers at risk applying for external and particularly European research funding.

Contact person for Scholars at Risk at the University of Gothenburg: Karolina Catoni, International Centre

Regarding the war in Ukraine

Within Scholars at Risk there are discussions at the national level concerning support measures for incoming researchers from Ukraine. There is also a dialogue with research funders about possible collaborations with Swedish universities in order to increase the number of individuals who can get academic sanctuaries through Scholars at Risk in Sweden.

At present, many inquiries come directly to our researchers from their Ukrainian colleagues calling for research stays in Sweden and the rest of Europe. We also see that there is a great willingness to contribute within the Swedish dormitory, both from higher education institutions and from individual researchers, but also from other actors in the university sector.

The University of Gothenburg has decided on a special financial allocation for visiting researchers from Ukraine. This initiative falls outside the regular Scholars at Risk process. Read more in the news article to the right.