Memory & Harmony

An evening celebrating the 25th Anniversary of the Hellenic Institute, Royal Holloway, University of London with Bettany Hughes and Panayiotis Gogos at the Hellenic Centre, London, 30 November 2017

Re: Academics teaching on European affairs and Brexit

Chris Heaton-Harris, Conservative MP for Daventry, government whip and arch Eurosceptic has had the temerity to write to vice-chancellors asking for ‘the names of professors at your establishment who are involved in teaching European affairs with particular reference to Brexit’. Not content with this unacceptable intrusion into academic life he also asked to be provided with ‘a copy of the syllabus and links to the college lectures which relate to this area’.

There is a disturbing pattern emerging here. During the referendum campaign, the Conservative MP, Bernard Jenkin, who is a board member of Vote Leave, made an official complaint when the LSE hosted an event at which the secretary general of the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development said that there was ‘no upside for the UK in Brexit’. Jenkin also accused the LSE’s Centre for Economic Performance of producing partisan research designed to convince the public to stay in the EU. This prompted numerous inquiries by the Electoral Commission, although no action against the university was forthcoming.