Russia-Ukraine War: Massachusetts Institute of Technology Cuts Ties With Russian University

Russia Ukraine United States Europe Higher Education News by Erudera News Mar 01, 2022

Massachusetts Institute of Technology

The Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in Cambridge has decided to cut ties with the research university in Russia, Skolkovo Institute of Science and Technology (Skoltech), due to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

MIT said in a statement that the Skolkovo Institute of Science has been informed on February 25 that MIT is exercising its right to terminate the Skoltech Program, reports.

“In light of the unacceptable military actions against Ukraine by the Russian government, MIT President L. Rafael Reif, in consultation with senior leadership, determined that MIT’s relationship with the Skolkovo Institute of Science and Technology (Skoltech) must end,” MIT’s statement published on the program’s website reads.

According to the statement, this step is taken with deep regret because of the respect for the Russian people and appreciation for Russian academics’ contribution, but the decision means a rejection of the Russian attack on Ukraine.

Cambridge’s university said that the decision will directly impact principal investigators (PIs) at MIT who have been leading Skoltech program projects, but also their students. However, the institute also noted it will make sure that students in this program can complete research and academic work without any interruption.

MIT officials stressed that although the relations between universities must end, they are proud of MIT’s work with Skoltech and the research that has been conducted over the past decade.

“We affirm our steadfast belief in our colleagues at Skoltech: They are fellow scholars who have devoted themselves to an ethos of openness and who have contributed their own expertise and knowledge to build a unique and pioneering academic center in Russia,” the statement adds.

The Massachusetts Institute of Technology had helped the establishment of the research university Skolkovo Institute of Science and Technology in Moscow more than a decade ago.

Following the conflict, many universities worldwide have offered assistance to universities in Ukraine, including several European universities. The European University Association (EUA) said it is in contact with 26 Ukrainian members and prepared to offer any support they can during this distressing situation.

German Universities Stand in Solidarity With Ukrainian Universities, Condemn Russian Attack

“EUA is also in the process of liaising with its wide member- and partnership to identify coordinated and effective ways to support the Ukrainian university sector in its missions,” EUA said in a press release.

Meanwhile, universities across Ukraine have asked their students and staff to stay in their homes and continue education remotely until further notice.

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