Sir Martin Taylor, the Warden of Merton College, has been presented with an award for outstanding service by the Institute of International Education's Scholar Rescue Fund. The award recognises his "extraordinary commitment ... to preserving the life, voice, ideas, and work of a persecuted scholar by providing a safe academic haven."
"I am amazed, delighted and honoured by the award. It recognises Merton’s work and commitment to at-risk academics," Sir Martin said.
The Warden and the College were pleased to be able to offer a two-year appointment as a Visiting Academic to Dr Ziad Soufi, a post-doctoral researcher working in the field of molecular plant pathology. Dr Soufi was an undergraduate at Syria's Tishreen University, where he completed a post-graduate diploma in aquatic environmental science before reading for his doctorate at the University of Bayreuth in Germany.
The Scholar Rescue Fund (SRF) selects outstanding professors, researchers, and public intellectuals for fellowship support and arranges visiting academic positions with partnering institutions of higher learning and research. The SRF was launched in 2002 by the Institute of International Education (IIE), which has participated in the rescue of persecuted scholars since its founding in 1919. The IIE is a US-based independent not-for-profit organisation that works to build more peaceful and equitable societies by advancing scholarship, building economies and promoting access to opportunity.