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Salient. Victoria University Student Newspaper. Volume. 34, Number 15. August 4, 1971

Military Research Contracts in N.Z. Universities

Military Research Contracts in N.Z. Universities

Over the past few years New Zealand Universities, especially Canterbury University, have performed scientific work un contract to the U.S. Department of Defense. In some cases military significance of the work is hard to see, but it can assumed that the U.S. Defense Department is not fostering p science without hoping for some eventual military usefull Indeed it is now not allowed to so so, since Section 203 of the Military Procurement and Research Authorization Bill requires the Department of Defense shall not finance "any research programme or study unless such project or study has a direct and appart relationship to a specific military function or operation Commenting on Section 203, John S. Foster, director of [unclear: Defe] Research and engineering said "I do not expect that implementation of these sections will entail any new type of review of selection"—in other works all past research had usefulness, but this usefulness had not been emphasized in the [unclear: pi] A Defense Department memo stresses this "Insufficient [unclear: attent] has geen given to making clear to Congress the basis for deciding work in a particular field and particularly the connections; between relatively basic research and long range Defense problem missions which require such research."

Congressman Mike Mansfield has said "Section 203 makes abundantly clear to students, to scientists, to officers universities..., that money received from defence appropriates for research is needed to carry out a specific military need function and is directly related to the defence needs of country." In the U.S. students have organised demonstration sit-ins occupations and even riots to force their universities abandon defense-tainted" money, here in New Zealand it is quietly accepted.

The total value of military grants made to New Zealand Universities is unknown, but some figures can be presented which give an idea of what the total might be. Over the period of 1962 for example, 8 grants brought $165,000 to the University Canterbury, and there are another 6 grants for which values are known (although it is possible that the money alloted to these grants is already included in the $165,000), On 1 January [unclear: 19] according to a U.S. Defense Department summary four contain with New Zealand Universities were underway, worth a total $96,400. These contracts run for an average period of 2 year or so it might be said that New Zealand Universities are receiving military money at the rate of about $50,000 per year. About half this goes to the University of Canterbury Probably this flow money will decrease, if it has not already done so, with [unclear: budgetting] restraints now being applied in the U.S. [unclear: Defe] Department.