Global Survey of Academic Freedom Issues in 2015 [Post 9 of a Series]

ACADEME BLOG

New Zealand

In New Zealand, Jarrod Gilbert, a sociologist at the University of Canterbury, claimed that he was “being muzzled by the police” (Bootham). Gilbert said police asked researchers “to sign contracts when they released data, and a standard clause gave them the right to veto any findings being published” and that “he had been blacklisted by the police because he had talked to gang members” (Bootham): “’The police are wielding a very big stick here in order to muzzle or restrict academic freedom and inquiry and of course limit free speech, it is extraordinary’” (Bootham).

Sandra Grey, the national president of the Tertiary Education Union (TEU), which represents university faculty, issued a lengthy statement on the case and its broader implications: “’Most external research contracts actually do have some sort of clause about [by] who and how the information will be released, but your scientists have talked about…

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