FREE Subscription to our
just enter your email address
View Previous Issues



Newsnight: Academic Boycott of Israel

Newsnight Report
10 July 2002



Academics incensed by the Sharon government's policies towards the Palestinians have tried to use Israel's close research links with the European Union and the European Science Foundation as leverage. One of the chief campaigners is Professor Steven Rose, of the Open University, a Jew who lost relatives in the Holocaust. He floated proposals for a boycott in a letter to the Guardian that criticises military reoccupation of Palestinian territories and human rights violations. This has been signed by more than 750 European academics.

Professor Steven Rose (Open University, UK)

"Under these circumstances," writes Professor Rose, "I can no longer... cooperate with official Israeli institutions, including universities. I will attend no scientific conferences in Israel, and I will not participate as referee in hiring or promotion decisions by Israeli universities, or in the decisions of Israeli funding agencies..."

Professor Hilary Rose (City University, UK)

His wife, Professor Hilary Rose, of City University, said: "What you are seeing is a huge, intense debate going on all over academic life." She said she had pulled out of a European conference on science and gender to which she was passionately committed because an Israeli delegation had been invited.

Newsnight Report

Newsnight starts by talking to Steven Rose about the campaign and this is followed by a panel discussion hosted by Jeremy Paxman with Professor Hilary Rose succesfully defending the academic boycott with Dr Aaron Benavot (Hebrew University of Jerusalem) and Professor Marc Eisenstadt (Open University, UK) attacking.

Dr Aaron Benavot (Hebrew University of Jerusalem)


Professor Marc Eisenstadt (Open University, UK)


Newsnight Report

Download (shift-click) report (real audio 13min 1.6Mb)

[ * A streaming real-video of the programme was available on the BBC website but unfortunately its been replaced by the latest edition of newsnight. (If an archive site exists, its worth knowing that the boycott report starts 32min in to the programme) ]


Additional Resources

Boycott of Israeli Scientific Institutions Web Site
This includes the list of academics boycotting Israel.

Related Boycott News Articles (in chronological order):