St Mary’s University College
Centre for Bioethics and Emerging Technologies (CBET)
Prof. Dr. Jeremy J. Ramsden, President, Collegium Basilea (Institute of Advanced Study), Basel, Switzerland
Thursday 18th October 2012
5.30pm – 7pm, followed by a drinks reception
Senior Common Room, St Mary’s University College, Twickenham
Free event, all welcome. No registration required.
“Corporate responsibility” (CR) is most commonly used in connexion with firms, who often interpret it simply as the sponsoring of charitable or environmentally beneficial works (sometimes called corporate social responsibility). A more general definition is the responsibility of a firm for its impacts (social and environmental). In progressive societies it is usually taken for granted that universities are beneficial; this has recently been more explicitly promoted via the notion of “brainprint”, defined as the (positive) impact on society of the “tremendous intellectual and technical advances” made by universities. But now that universities are increasingly run as commercial corporations, encouraged by governments, it no longer appears appropriate to automatically assume that they are beneficial to society, or that research is independent. This lecture will explore whether the present organization of universities hinders their ability to undertake truly independent, honest work and what changes might be required to restore this ability.
About the Speaker
Jeremy Ramsden obtained his BA and MA in natural sciences from Cambridge University (UK), and his PhD (1985) in chemical physics at the Ecole polytechnique fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL). Having worked at Princeton University, the Hungarian Academy of Sciences in Szeged, Biocentre of Basel University, and Cranfield University, amongst other places, he is now the president of Collegium Basilea (Institute of Advanced Study), Basel, Switzerland. Author or co-author of over 200 research articles, and about a dozen books, he is also the Editor-in-Chief of the journal Nanotechnology Perceptions, a IUPAC Fellow, and a Fellow of the Institute of Materials, Minerals and Mining in London.
Senior Common Room, St Mary’s University College, Waldegrave Road, Strawberry Hill, Twickenham, TW1 4SX, UK.
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