Richard Samuels © MIT Political Science Dept.
More than fifty years ago, MIT established the Center for International Studies to conduct research to help the United States in its cold war struggle against the Soviet Union. Before long, however, the Center broadened its focus to include research and teaching in a wide range of international subjects, among them development studies, comparative politics, international relations, social movements, security studies, and international science and technology.
MIT and the Center have always sought to bridge the worlds of the scholar and the policymaker by offering each a place to exchange thoughts and perspectives with the other, and by encouraging academics to work on policy-relevant programs. Center scholars, and the students they helped educate, have served at senior levels in every administration since the Kennedy years. It is a source of great pride to all of us at CIS that they are today among the nation's most distinguished analysts and executives in government and the private sector.
It goes without saying that the world changed on September 11, 2001. We have each had to respond personally and intellectually to the challenges of terrorism and the many threats to world peace that have flowed from them. Apart from all that it meant to those who lost dear friends and family, and apart from all that it meant for our renewed sense of America as a community, 9/11 was also a terrifying challenge to the academy. It tested the relevance of the knowledge we generate and the quality of the recommendations we make. It reminded us with painful urgency of our responsibilities as educators and public intellectuals.
—Richard J. Samuels,
Ford International Professor of Political Science
Mind, Hand, World.
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