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MIT researchers have found that online restaurant data can be used to accurately predict key socioeconomic factors for neighborhoods in China, reports the Xinhua news agency. The researchers found that “in nine Chinese cities, the presence of restaurants could effectively predict a neighborhood's daytime and nighttime population, the number of businesses and overall spending.”

The Washington Post

Prof. M. Taylor Fravel co-authored an open letter in The Washington Post in which members of the academic, military and business communities express concern about the U.S. government’s interactions with China. “Although we are very troubled by Beijing’s recent behavior, which requires a strong response, we also believe that many U.S. actions are contributing directly to the downward spiral in relations.”

CommonHealth (WBUR)

Carey Goldberg reports for WBUR CommonHealth on the MIT president’s recent letter to the community describing immigration as a kind of oxygen. “In his letter, MIT President Reif adds the force of his own bully pulpit, writing that MIT flourishes because it draws talent from around the globe,” writes Goldberg.


Researchers from MIT and other institutions have developed a new model for autism research that could enable new therapies and treatments, reports the Xinhua news agency. The model could “provide a basis for a deeper understanding of the neurobiological mechanisms of autism and the development of more transformative therapeutics.”


A new study co-authored by MIT researchers finds that factories in China have been emitting a compound banned under the Montreal Protocol that destroys the Earth’s ozone layer, reports Yen Nee Lee for CNBC. The researchers found that “China accounted for 40% to 60% of the global increase in trichlorofluoromethane, or CFC-11, emissions between 2014 and 2017.”

Technology Review

Technology Review reporter James Temple spotlights a new study co-authored by MIT researchers that finds factories in China are using a banned compound. The finding underscores the need for monitoring adherence to pollution accords, explains Prof. Ronald Prinn. “At the end of the day, any treaty that doesn’t have an independent verification mechanism isn’t going to be successful,” he explains.


Axios reporter Andrew Freeman writes that a new study co-authored by MIT researchers finds that factories in northern China have been using the banned CFC-11 compound, which eats away at the Earth’s ozone layer. Prof. Ronald Prinn explains that CFC-11 stays in the atmosphere for 52 years and even “with no emissions, it still lingers on and on and on.”

Boston Globe

Writing for The Boston Globe, Prof. Thomas Levenson argues that fears about China’s potential to dominate 5G demonstrate the need for the U.S. to invest in scientific research. “If our scientific dominance ends, it will not be because of Chinese perfidy, but because the US chose to surrender its commanding role in the search for knowledge,” writes Levenson.


The Economist spotlights the work of Prof. David Autor and the influence of his research examining how labor markets respond to disruption. The Economist notes that Autor’s research “is enormously influential, in large part because of his groundbreaking work on the effects on American workers of China’s extraordinary rise.”

HealthDay News

HealthDay reporter Steven Reinberg writes that a new study by Prof. Siqi Zheng finds that air pollution can make people unhappy. Zheng found that, “On days with high levels of pollution, people are more likely to engage in impulsive and risky behavior that they may later regret, possibly because of short-term depression and anxiety,” writes Reinberg.


Inverse reporter Emma Betuel reports on a new study by MIT researchers showing that air quality impacts the happiness of people living in cities in China. “When the air is polluted people stay home, they don’t go out, and they order food delivery while staying home playing computer games and shopping online,” explains Prof. Siqi Zheng.

Fast Company

By analyzing posts on social media in China, Prof. Siqi Zheng has found that air pollution can cause increased levels of depression and unhappiness, reports Adele Peters for Fast Company. “We want to show that there’s a wider range of the social cost of air pollution,” explains Zheng.

Financial Times

Prof. David Autor speaks with Brendan Greeley, host of the Financial Times “Alphachat” podcast, about how trade and automation impact the economy and labor market. Autor emphasizes that the U.S. needs to “invest in people,” adding, “if you want to share the gains need to find a way to bring people along.”

New York Times

Writing for The New York Times, Prof. Yasheng Huang examines what Jack Ma stepping down as executive chairman of Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. signals about the future of China’s economy. Huang writes that Ma’s departure “adds to a gathering sense that China’s private sector, the engine of the economy, is losing steam — and faith.”

NBC News

In an article for NBC News about how climate change could make life unsustainable in the countries along the Persian Gulf and North Africa, Charlene Gubash highlights an MIT study showing that temperatures there and in southwest Asia, “will exceed the threshold for human survival if nations fail to reign in emissions.”