Science for the People is interested in the structure and social implications of scientific research. For instance, how has funding from the military affected the research agenda at places like MIT? Why is relatively little money allocated nationally for climate change research? Why are there such disparities - in race, gender, and socioeconomic class - in the training and promotion of scientific researchers? By asking such questions, we aim to examine science’s role as a social institution and the scientist’s as a member of society. Our goal is work towards a science that is more diverse, socially engaged, and democratic.
SftP is inspired by the original “Science for the People” (SftP), a group of scientist-activists who were active at MIT, Harvard, and around the country in the 1970s and 1980s. The problems that the original group was grappling with - war, racism, ecological catastrophe, etc.- still remain. MIT SftP is part of a broader, national effort to revitalize SftP.