Universities are unique institutions in democratic societies. Charged with the tasks of conducting critical and original research in the pursuit of knowledge, and of training and educating adult students, they provide a forum in which both staff and students are encouraged to think for themselves.
In Australia, the Senate Standing Committee on Education, Employment and Workplace Relations (SSCEEWR) conducted an Inquiry into Academic Freedom in the second half of 2008. The inquiry had been established in the dying days of the Coalition-controlled Senate in late June 2008. On 4 December the Inquiry released its report