“The fact that universities still allow companies like Shell to proudly parade around at career days in 2023 shows just how badly our actions are needed”, End Fossil argues. “A company that is destroying our future should have no place at a university that should be preparing us for the future.”
That is why, starting 2 May, students will be occupying universities and schools, the action group announced in a press release. The group said this would involve ‘more disruptive forms of civil disobedience’ than they have used during previous international protests. The Dutch branch of End Fossil has local groups in Utrecht, Rotterdam, Amsterdam, Eindhoven, Leiden, Delft and Velp.
Previous targets included buildings of the University of Amsterdam, Erasmus University Rotterdam and TU Eindhoven.
Relaxed atmosphere at occupation in Erasmus building
The protest in the Erasmus building is unfolding in a relaxed manner. A hairdresser is…
According to UNL, the association of Dutch universities, institutions are open to talks with action groups. They organise meetings and debates on this topic, and invite the action groups to join. UNL stresses that any decisions regarding collaboration with fossil fuel companies are up to individual universities.
In his answer to parliamentary questions by the SP, Minister of Education, Culture and Science Robbert Dijkgraaf agreed with the stance that universities should be allowed to decide for themselves whether to collaborate with fossil companies such as Shell. However, administrators must ensure that ‘the independence of academic teaching and research, and academic freedom are sufficiently guaranteed’.