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Special Colloquium – Xiaoxing Xi (Temple University)

Date February 28 @ 4:00 pm - 5:00 pm

Challenges Facing Academics of Chinese Descent and Those Who Collaborate with Scientists in China

Collaborating with scientists in China was once encouraged by the US government and universities. As tension between the two countries rises rapidly, those who did, especially scientists of Chinese descent, are under heightened scrutiny by the federal government. Law enforcement officials consider collaborating with Chinese colleagues “by definition conveying sensitive information to the Chinese.” In 2015, I became a casualty of this campaign despite being innocent. In 2018, the Department of Justice established the “China Initiative,” which has resulted in numerous prosecutions of university professors for allegedly failing to disclose China ties. In this talk, I will discuss the criminal prosecutions of Professor Anming Hu of University of Tennessee, Professor Charles Lieber of Harvard University, and Professor Gang Chen of MIT as well as government policies and congressional actions on research security. Collectively, they have created an environment overtly hostile to academics of Chinese descent and scientific exchanges with China. It is a tall order to convince the public and policy makers that this is not in America’s interest, but the scientific community must try lest the American leadership in science and technology will be irreparably damaged.


February 28
4:00 pm - 5:00 pm
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