SSE President’s comments on the Stockholm attack
Last Friday we witnessed first hand that no place is safe. A few blocks from the Stockholm School of Economics, terror, once again, showed its ugly face.
My thoughts go out to the victims and their families during these difficult times.
These are times of mourning, of frustration, but also, again, of persistence. My belief in knowledge, in science and in education is stronger than ever. The best reply to terror is openness, tolerance and above all, knowledge.
In today’s world, just as last Friday’s attack proved, the future is hard to predict. We see a substantially different geo-political situation with increasing protectionism, growing nationalism and unpredictable power shifts. What many of us thought would never happen just did. And with political leaders questioning the role of science and downplaying the need for freedom of speech, the playing fields, of business and society have quickly been re-shuffled and redrawn.
What are we to do today? Give up and surrender to ignorance? Just accept the fact that our world is now too unpredictable to be understood? Or is it better to re-orient every day? Or just cling to what we have?
This is where education becomes more important than ever. Higher education provides us with tools for understanding the world and our ability to distinguish between different types of knowledge remains crucial. My hope is that during this difficult time we continue to value the role of higher education, and, more importantly, be compassionate, caring and open to all.
President at the Stockholm School of Economics