Studying these cells could lead to new treatments for diseases ranging from gastrointestinal disease to diabetes.
Forty members of the MIT community, in a protest on the focus of the Industry Summit, signed a statement released at a news conference last Thursday at the Stratton Student Center
The statement said:
"As members of the MIT community, we are concerned that the World Industry Summit about to take place in our midst reflects neither the actual range of expertise at the Institute nor the commitment many of us feel to social welfare.
"We are concerned that the `Summit' agenda does not adequately address the genuine complexity of the issues to be discussed September 9-12. The activities of corporate and governmental bodies transform the social, physical, and economic environment in ways that have broad social impact. Technological and industrial changes are linked to large scale unemployment, growing disparity between rich and poor (both within the US and between countries in the Northern and Southern hemispheres) and the shattering of communities as we see in the spread of drugs and violence at home and abroad.
"We believe that we have a responsibility not only to government and corporate leaders, but to leaders of employee associations, unions, consumer groups, youth groups, community associations and organizations protecting civil rights, women's interests, public education and the environment. Our responsibilities as teachers and scholars extend to all people whose lives will be impacted by policies formulated at the `World Industry Summit.'
"In the past decade many at MIT successfully pressed the Institute to abandon its dependence on weapons development and turn its resources toward technology for peaceful economic development. In the present period we believe we must resist the tendency represented by the summit to couple the Institute too closely to the private appropriation of social wealth and human resources.
"Many at MIT and in the larger community who are not represented at the summit have valuable expertise and insight into the matters of the conference. We invite our colleagues to join us in addressing the emerging technological and industrial transformations with the fullest concern for individual human development and the entire social fabric."
The signers, according to Professor Jonathan King, one of the organizers, were:
Stephen Brophy, Jesse Ribot, Joshua Cohen, Mary Ni, Yale Rabin, Louise Dunlap, Wayne O"Neil, Kenneth Hale, Jeanne Bamberger, Scott Paradise, Lisa Court, Evelyn Keller, Lisa Peattie, Jean Riesman, Jonathan King, Ruth Perry, Lynn McCormick, Mel King, Alan Shihadeh, The Alternative News Collective, Dan Kemp, Jesse Stickold-Sarah, Vera Kistiakowsky, Suzanne Flynn, Theresa Tobin, Arthur Steinberg, Laurie McLaughlin, Leon Trilling, Alford Dyson Jr , Steven Chorover, Jonathan Fox, Rebecca Cooprider, Archon Fung, Jennifer Carson, Connie Ozawa, Noam Chomsky, Heather Lechtman, Bernard Campbell, Sandra Martin, Chris Thomas.
A version of this article appeared in the September 15, 1993 issue of MIT Tech Talk (Volume 38, Number 6).