Paradox of academic freedom, autonomy and jurisdiction of universities

Jae Hyung PARK, Nadezhda LAZAREVA

Research output: Contribution to conferencePapers


Right of freedom of speech and expression, despite being first documented as early as in 1689 and charted by the United Nations General Assembly in 1948, is subject to a variety of interpretations and restrictions. Although all academics possess this right as human beings, it is often limited by the legal framework in which the academic freedom is being exercised. In this article, we explore how the legal personhood of the university correlates with the academic freedom. We start by examining university jurisdiction including its cultural, legal, economical, democratic, and human rights factors. We then analyse universities’ legal form with private/public distinction to discuss factors affecting the scope of autonomy of universities and perform comparisons among jurisdictions. We showcase our claims with two jurisdictions in turmoil: Turkey’s ongoing repression on scholars and freedom of expression, and the problem of Hong Kong University’s internal governance freedom in the context of postcolonial struggles. We conclude with a discussion on what appears to be more a discrepancies surrounding legal jurisdictions and a corollary of longstanding loopholes of legal-positivism.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2016


Park, J., & Lazareva, N. (2016, November). Paradox of academic freedom, autonomy and jurisdiction of universities. Paper presented at the 2016 CESHK Autumn Forum: Hong Kong in Comparative Perspectives, The Education University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong, China.


Dive into the research topics of 'Paradox of academic freedom, autonomy and jurisdiction of universities'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.