The announcement we gave on Monday 13 November not to make the campus or our premises available for political manifestations has aroused strong reactions.
I think that the level of interest and dedication is positive – students, researchers and teachers want an open atmosphere, a campus open for discussion and where different opinions and thoughts can be expressed and tested against each other. That, of course, is the only reasonable basic principle for me personally as well. Our challenge is to ensure a safe study and work environment at the same time. We believe that a dialogue with organisers and a handling according to the process that is now being developed will be sufficient.
At the same time, there is every reason to be humble about this.
The position was not taken in a vacuum, but based on an analysis of the then prevailing, escalating situation. Actions and activities were carried out on campus, in ways that made employees and students feel uncomfortable, threatened and worried, and we felt that we had to act to ensure safety and the work environment. However, we should have been clearer that the intention was to withdraw the position as soon as the situation permitted.
This actually means that we are returning to the practice that applied before, where the ambition was to have a dialogue with organisers before events and manifestations. This ambition has not always been the fulfilled. The university and the student union will now jointly develop the process to ensure that a dialogue always takes place.
The new position, which comes into effect immediately, means that Chalmers’ stance of not allowing political manifestations on campus has been revoked.
Martin Nilsson Jacobi, President and CEO of Chalmers University of Technology
Under the headline "President’s perspective" the President and CEO for Chalmers University of Technology, shares his reflections on current topics that concern education, research and utilisation.