MIT Faculty Newsletter  
contents Vol. XX No. 5
May / June 2008

This issue of the Faculty Newsletter features three articles on MIT finances: "Endowment Spending Policy at MIT," "A New Approach to MIT's Financial Planning," and "A Primer on Indirect Costs." We also offer preliminary results from the 2008 Faculty Survey and an update on the Initiative on Faculty Race and Diversity.

The Pentagon: Wikimedia Commons
Anthropologists Express Concern Over Government Plan to Support Military-Related Research in Universities
The newly-formed Network of Concerned Anthropologists comments on the Pentagon's aggressive recruiting of social scientists.
Changes in Engineering Education
Ernst Frankel laments America's failure to appreciate the importance of teaching engineering fundamentals.
Reflections on Nominations and Elections for Faculty Officers
and Committees at MIT

Michel DeGraff questions MIT's defacto one-party system for nominations and elections.
Financing Undergraduate Education
As the cost for attending college continues to skyrocket, the burden of funding deserving students is being shared by both the students’ families as well as the . . .
MIT Faculty Survey: It's About Time
Lydia Snover
“The only reason for time,” said Albert Einstein, “is so that everything doesn’t happen at once.” At MIT, our faculty seem to be challenging Einstein’s observation . . .
Berwick, Lee, and Orlin Elected to FNL Editorial Board
Results of the first Institute-wide election by faculty are in, and the newly-elected members of the Faculty Newsletter Editorial Board are . . .
From the Faculty Chair
Reconsidering the Value of Service to MIT
Bish Sanyal
Have you seen the 2008 MIT Faculty Quality of Life Survey? Or perhaps you are still somewhat unhappy that the survey was so long, and you don’t trust the findings . . .
Confidentiality in Faculty Recruitment, Promotion,
and Tenure Reviews
L. Rafael Reif, Bish Sanyal
MIT’s Policies and Procedures include provisions designed to ensure that candidates for appointment, promotion, and tenure receive a thorough and fair review of their . . .
Provost Announces Faculty Renewal Program
Editor's Note: As we went to press, Provost L. Rafael Reif announced in an e-mail to all faculty the initiation of a Faculty Renewal Program. We reprint that e-mail below.
Endowment Spending Policy at MIT
Seth Alexander, Ahron Herring
The MIT Investment Management Company, or MITIMCo, coordinates the investment operations of the Institute. The department has the responsibility for the prudent . . .
A New Approach to MIT's Financial Planning
L. Rafael Reif, Terry Stone
In recent years, the Provost and the Executive Vice President’s teams have been working with faculty leadership and the administration of the academic units to . . .
A Primer on Indirect Costs
Claude Canizares
Among university faculty, indirect costs or overhead has about the same appeal as taxation among political candidates. So it seemed appropriate, soon after April 15 . . .
Changes in Engineering Education
Ernst Frankel
Engineering education in America has changed dramatically during recent years. Not only has the number of graduates in traditional engineering disciplines such as . . .
Anthropologists Express Concern Over Government Plan
to Support Military-Related Research in Universities
Jean E. Jackson
Last summer, former MIT professor Hugh Gusterson, nine other anthropologists, and I co-founded the Network of Concerned Anthropologists (NCA), with the goal of . . .
Reflections on Nominations and Elections for Faculty Officers
and Committees at MIT
Michel DeGraff
The Officers of the Faculty and the Standing Faculty Committees constitute the core of faculty governance at MIT: These positions and structures are the main venue for . . .
Initiative on Faculty Race and Diversity:
Research Team and Effort Launched
Paula Hammond
The Initiative on Faculty Race and Diversity has been very active over the past academic year. This effort seeks to investigate the experiences of minority faculty . . .
MIT Poetry
The Man I Killed; Lise
David Thorburn
was in his early 30s, rosaceous, / pocky, the Checker / on a Newark pier. He said /
I'll be respected / by New Jersey turds / like you reporters
Creating a Culture of Communication: Assessing the Implementation of the Undergraduate Communication Requirement
Samuel Allen, Tania Baker
In november of 2001, 958 members of the MIT faculty (all tenure track faculty) were invited bo the Office of the Provost to complete the HERI faculty survey.
The Vision Thing
Alison Alden
I have been at MIT a full year now, enough time to experience and appreciate the full depth of your, the faculty’s, commitment to MIT’s world-class teaching and research.
Lerman Now Dean for Graduate Education
Prof. Steve Lerman has had a change of title. As of March 31, 2008, the Dean for Graduate Students (Prof. Lerman) is the Dean for Graduate Education.
The Spellings Commission Backs Off
Lori Breslow
I read with interest Professor Jonathan King’s article on the Spellings Commission and the issue of standardized testing. I’ve been following the Spellings Commission . .
Who Should Be Allowed to Speak at Faculty Meetings?
Ceasar L. McDowell
I am writing to comment on the amendment to the motion presented at the April faculty meeting that would allow speaking privileges to professors emeriti. In reviewing . . .
M.I.T. Numbers
from the 2008 Faculty Survey: Reasonableness of Workload
M.I.T. Numbers
from the 2008 Faculty Survey: Satisfaction with . . .
M.I.T. Numbers
from the 2008 Faculty Survey: Sources of Stress