DSE students receive support from across the globe

Around 309 eminent academics from top universities across the globe have sent an open letter to Oxford University Press, Cambridge University Press and Taylor & Francis Group - expressing solidarity with the students who were this past week made a party to a lawsuit filed by the publishers against Delhi University and a photocopying shop in the Delhi School of Economics for copyright infringement.

The list also includes about 33 authors whose publications are the subject matter of the copyright infringement.

The list of signatories on the letter reads like the who’s who of the academic world from universities including Harvard, Oxford, Stanford, Cambridge and Princeton, as also Delhi University and Jawaharlal Nehru University.

Economic inequalities

“We are given to believe that the infringement that has been claimed is with respect to course packs that are used as a part of various social science subjects including history, politics, economics, sociology etc. As authors and educators, we would like to place on record our distress at this act of the publishers, as we recognize the fact that in a country like India marked by sharp economic inequalities, it is often not possible for every student to obtain a personal copy of a book,” said the letter.

Eminent economist Amartya Sen had earlier in September sent a letter to Oxford University Press (OUP) expressing his sympathies with the students. “As an OUP author I would like to urge my publishers to not draw the full force of the law to make these course packs impossible to generate and use,” he had said, adding “educational publishers have to balance various interests, and the cause of education must surely be a very important one.”