Hungary mission: MEPs report academic freedom concerns

A cross-party group of Members of the European Parliament (MEPs) have reported back strong concerns about a deterioration of academic freedom in Hungary, as well as issues of self-censorship among researchers and wider problems with government influence over the media, courts, arts and culture, writes Thomas Brent for ScienceBusiness.

The eight-strong delegation from the Parliament’s Committee on Culture and Education (CULT) went to Budapest last November on a fact-finding mission to learn about the country’s cultural, educational, research and media policies, and reported its findings in March. Sabine Verheyen, a member of the European People's Party and chair of CULT, who led the delegation, said that while there are concerns about academic freedom and other issues in all member states, in Hungary it is the accumulation of these issues that is so worrying.

“If you have for example the education sector, the university sector, the cultural sector and the media sector more or less captured by one side […] it is more than just one small problem in one area or even one big problem in one aspect,” she told Science|Business.
Full report on the ScienceBusiness site