UC Regents To Vote on Ban on Tobacco-Funded Research
The UC Board of Regents on Thursday will vote on a proposal by several board members to ban research funding from tobacco companies, the Contra Costa Times reports (Krupnick, Contra Costa Times, 1/16).
The existing policy at the university permits any type of research funding as long as the university controls the research and publication of results.
The proposal would prevent funding from manufacturers or distributors of tobacco products, and their affiliates, to study "tobacco-related diseases, the use of tobacco products, or the individual or societal impacts of such use."
Lawrence Coleman, UC's vice provost for research, said the vice chancellors for research at all 10 campuses oppose a ban because it would limit academic freedom and could lead to funding restrictions for other research projects, such as AIDS or illicit drug use (Su, San Diego Union-Tribune, 1/17).
The proposed funding restriction would affect Philip Morris USA, the only tobacco company that currently funds UC research. The company is paying almost $16 million to fund 19 projects on four UC campuses. The majority of research focuses on the health effects of smoking (Contra Costa Times, 1/16).
Video of the meeting will be broadcast online.