Since 2003, hundreds of Iraqi scholars have been killed, specifically targeted by various factions and militias intent on destroying the intellectual capital of Iraq. Untold thousands have been threatened and forced to flee while others are trapped in the country, unable to teach, conduct research, or carry out productive academic work.
In response to one of the greatest academic crises of our time, the Institute of International Education's Scholar Rescue Fund (SRF) launched the Iraq Scholar Rescue Project. This project has assisted more than 250 of Iraq's most senior and threatened academics in a wide range of academic disciplines – through temporary academic positions at universities, colleges and other institutions of higher learning in the Middle East and North African regions. (Some exceptions may be considered for university positions in other world regions.) In doing so, the Scholar Rescue Fund hopes to contribute to the preservation of Iraq's vital intellectual capital and ensure that, when conditions permit, these scholars will be able to return home to rebuild their once flourishing academic communities.