The University of the West Indies has signed an agreement with the University of Glasgow to establish a research center to look at legacies of slavery and colonialism.
The document, framed as a “Reparatory Justice” initiative, acknowledges that while the University of Glasgow lent support to efforts to abolish the trade in enslaved Africans and to end slavery, it also received significant financial support from people whose wealth was derived from African enslavement.
The evidence of this history of financial benefiting from enslavement, particularly in the Caribbean context, was presented by a research team commissioned by the University’s Vice-Chancellor, Professor Sir Anton Muscatelli.
The two universities have agreed to partner in a reparations strategy that focuses on how best to use this historical knowledge to fashion reparatory justice tools and research for Caribbean development.
Acknowledging that universities have a duty to be at once excellent and ethical, the MoU will enable the University of Glasgow to make specific and general contributions to Caribbean problem solving development.
Under the terms, the two universities agreed to establish the Glasgow-Caribbean Centre for Development Research.
Over the next two decades, UoG commits to spending £20 million as part of its programme of reparative justice, including seed funding, benefactions and research grant income raised from grant-giving bodies.
UoG will allocate resources to support the running of the Centre, scholarships, research, public engagement, and related initiatives.
Both universities will work together to attract external funding for mutually agreed projects that will benefit the communities of the Caribbean islands and other parts of the world affected by the slave trade.