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President L. Rafael Reif

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Boston Globe

President L. Rafael Reif and Linda Henry, CEO of Boston Globe Media Partners, took part in a wide-ranging fireside chat during the inaugural Globe Summit, touching upon everything from the urgent need to address the climate crisis to MIT’s response to Covid-19, the Institute’s approach to AI education and the greater Boston innovation ecosystem. “This is such an important global issue,” says Reif of climate change. “It’s the most serious challenge we have in our times.”
 

The Tech

Incoming Chancellor Melissa Nobles speaks with Tech reporter Srinidhi Narayanan about her academic trajectory, specific initiatives she is interested in pursuing as Chancellor and how she plans to incorporate student voice in decision-making. “In the Chancellor’s Office, we get to focus on the student experience inside and outside of the classroom, and we can help students grow into their whole selves here at MIT,” says Nobles.

Issues in Science and Technology

Writing for Issues in Science and Technology, President L. Rafael Reif examines Vannevar Bush’s groundbreaking 1945 Science, the Endless Frontier report and considers how our needs today have changed. “To meet this moment, we need to ensure that our federally sponsored research addresses questions that will enhance our competitiveness now and in the future,” writes Reif. “Our current system has many strengths…but we must not allow these historical advantages to blind us to gaps that could become fatal weaknesses.”

Boston Globe

Boston Globe reporter Laura Krantz reports that edX will be transferred to the education technology company 2U, and proceeds from the transaction will be used by a nonprofit aimed at addressing education inequalities and reimagining the future of learning.

The Wall Street Journal

Wall Street Journal reporter Melissa Korn writes that 2U, an education technology company, will acquire edX for $800 million. The proceeds flow to a new nonprofit, led by MIT and Harvard, which will “focus on reducing inequalities in access to education. It will maintain the open-access course platform built by edX, research online and hybrid-learning models, and work to minimize the digital divide that still serves as a barrier for many younger students and adults,” writes Korn. 

The Boston Globe

President L. Rafael Reif has been named to the board of the Massachusetts Competitive Partnership, reports Jon Chesto for The Boston Globe. “Reif is expected to focus in particular on the Partnership’s “Growing the Innovation Economy” committee, whose goals include enhancing science, math, and computer education in public schools in Massachusetts,” writes Chesto.

Marketplace

President L. Rafael Reif speaks with Sabri Ben-Achour of Marketplace about the importance of the Senate passing a new bill that invests in research and development. “We are in a science and technology race for the future,” says Reif. “It is with science and technology that we address things like Covid and the biggest challenges the world has; the health of our economy, our security. That is key to all of the above.”

The Tech

MIT has announced a new climate action plan aimed at helping the Institute tackle climate change, reports Kristina Chen for The Tech. The plan offers increased opportunities for student involvement and a new organizational structure. Maria Zuber, MIT’s vice president for research, explains that MIT feels “that it’s our responsibility and duty to try to make a genuine difference, and to do that, we’re going to need the help of everyone in the community.” 

WSHU

Profs. Elsa Olivetti and Christopher Knittel speak with J.D. Allen of WSHU about the future of renewable energy in New England. Olivetti notes that the MIT Climate & Sustainability Consortium is aimed at “looking at the role of industry in helping to accelerate the transition to reduce carbon emissions, and the idea is that by convening a set of cross economy, leading companies with the MIT community, we can identify pathways towards decarbonization particularly focused on those industries outside of the energy producing sector.”

The Boston Globe

Writing for The Boston Globe, President L. Rafael Reif emphasizes the importance of finding affordable, equitable ways to bring the global economy to net-zero carbon by 2050. “If individuals and institutions in every part of the economy and society tackle the pieces of the problem within their reach and collaborate with each other,” writes Reif, “we have a real shot — an Earthshot — at preserving a habitable world.”

The Wall Street Journal

Wall Street Journal reporter Dieter Holger spotlights the MIT Climate and Sustainability Consortium. Holger notes that in January “IBM joined a dozen other companies—including Apple Inc., Verizon Communications Inc. and Boeing Co. —as the inaugural members of the MIT Climate and Sustainability Consortium to develop technologies to combat climate change.”

Forbes

Forbes contributor Adi Gaskell spotlights how the MIT Task Force on the Work of the Future recently released a comprehensive report examining the future of work. Gaskell writes that the Task Force's report emphasizes the “pressing issues of our time as one of improving the quality of jobs to ensure that prosperity is shared across the economy.”

Financial Times

Writing for the Financial Times, Ryosuke Harada highlights a new MIT report that emphasizes the “importance of education and investment in human resources and warns that in the absence of a strategy, jobs will be lost and divisions in society will widen.”

Axios

Axios reporter Bryan Walsh writes that during the virtual AI and the Work of the Future Congress, Elisabeth Reynolds, executive director of the MIT Task Force on the Work of the Future, noted that “education and training are central to helping the current and next generation thrive in the labor market.”

CNBC

Elisabeth Reynolds, executive director of the MIT Task Force on the Work of the Future, speaks with Annie Nova of CNBC about the Task Force’s new report, which lays out recommendations for ensuring Americans are able to secure good jobs in an era of automation. “We’re suggesting that people have access to affordable education and training,” says Reynolds. “I think there’s a real opportunity to help transition people and educate workers without four-year degrees.”