Australia strengthens university foreign interference guidelines

Australia Strengthening foreign interference guidelines for universities Protect students, staff, and research by assisting in the process of better identifying and responding to risks.

Australian educational institutions need to assess staff at risk of foreign intervention. These identified individuals need to reveal links to foreign governments, the military, or intelligence agencies.

Interior Minister Karen Andrews said espionage and foreign intervention have challenged Australia’s democracy.

“These updated guidelines are more important than ever. Free and open, very important to Australian education and our way, as international students will soon return to many of Australia’s jurisdictions. Transparent discussions need to be embodied on the university campus. In life, “Andrews said.

Education Minister Alan Tudge said the guidelines guarantee the protection of some Australian researchers and world-leading scholars.

“Australian universities have been found to be the target of foreign interference with foreign actors, using sophisticated and deceptive means to steal Australian research and intellectual property,” Tudge said. Told. “The Morrison government takes the integrity of the study very seriously and continues to thwart efforts to steal information or interfere with the university.”

Tudge quoted the head of the Australian Security Intelligence Organization (ASIO). He said that the university’s major research, which led to important technical and military breakthroughs, was the subject of foreign interference and theft.

“In that regard, there are examples of universities whose finances are at risk by foreign stakeholders. There are examples of offensive threats to steal research at our university. Therefore, they are ASIO itself. Documented by, therefore, this problem is serious. ” Tudge said Sky News Australia.

Epoch Times Photo
Australian Minister of Education Alan Tudge will speak at a press conference at the Parliament Building in Canberra, Australia on October 22, 2021. (AAPImage / Lukas Coch)

Enhanced guidelines were released after Human Rights Watch published a report outlining the failure of Australian universities to protect academic freedom for students and scholars who criticized the Chinese Communist Party (CCP). ..

“Australian universities rely on the fees paid by international students while blinding to concerns about harassment and surveillance by the Chinese government and its agents,” said report author Sophie McNeill.

The report highlighted the sector’s over-reliance on income from Chinese students, who make up about one in ten students attending Australian universities in 2018.

This then created a self-censorship environment for CCP-sensitive topics.

The Australian University, the highest institution of Australian universities, said the sector worked closely with the government to revise the guidelines.

“This completes the guidelines. The sector will work to implement the updated advice,” said the President of the University of Australia. John Dewar said.. “We not only adapt and keep updating our approach, but also share good practices on all university campuses.”

“Our university strives for major breakthroughs while managing and mitigating risk, so we continue to lead the way in ensuring that Australia is working with world-leading researchers and institutions. I will continue. “

All Australian universities also employ codes to enhance freedom of speech on campus for students and scholars.

Rebecca Chu