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ACRE

Academic freedom fighter awarded

16 June 2016

Yesterday, German Professor of Sociology Gunnar Heinsohn (University of Bremen) was awarded with the Liberty Award of the AECR linked think tank New Direction – The Foundation for European Reform. At the award ceremony at University Foundation in Brussels, German and Polish MEPs honoured him as a true and honest advocate for freedom and democracy.

The award winner was introduced by distinguished Professor of Economics Joachim Starbatty MEP (University of Tübingen) and by the President of New Direction, Tomasz Poręba MEP. Moreover, guest speakers included New Direction Vice-President Hans-Olaf Henkel MEP and well-known Professor of Sociology Zdzisław Krasnodębsk MEP (University of Bremen).

Joachim Starbatty said in his laudation:

Gunnar Heinsohn is one of the last polymaths in this world. He stands for intellectual freedom and academic incorruptibility. […] Freedom is always closely connected to possible failure. Freedom means: to accept responsibility for your own actions as a person.

Zdzisław Krasnodębsk added that academic freedom should be eked out at universities again and again. At all times, science must defend its independence against attempts to monopolize it in terms of ideology or politics.

Gunnar Heinsohn received the Liberty Award for his outstanding work on demography, migration and his commitment to German-Polish relations. The award aims at honouring distinguished liberal personalities for their achievements in promoting free democracy and market economics. It includes prize money of 2.000 Euros and is awarded every year.

You will find the original press release of New Direction Germany, Bündnis Bürgerwille, and AECR member Allianz für Fortschritt und Aufbruch here (in German).