30 April 2013

Response by the Technion Students Association to University of Sydney’s Student Representative Council’s call to discontinue cooperation with the Technion

30 April 2013:
Regretfully, we have been recently notified of a resolution by the University of Sydney’s Student Representative Council (SRC) calling for the university to discontinue its cooperation with the Technion.
For more than two millennia academia has played a vital role in human progress and enlightenment, whilst global cooperation has spurred science and technology throughout the world.
Since its establishment, almost a century ago, the Technion - Israel Institute of Technology, has played a key role in pushing humankind forward, through research and alumni activity.
The Technion is the source of extensive contributions to human knowledge and well being, spanning various fields of science, medicine and technology. These include
  • the Nobel Prize winning research on ubiquitin-mediated protein degradation;
  • Rasagiline, a drug effective in the treatment of Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s diseases;
  • the “Snake Robot”, an innovative search and rescue robot invaluable to earthquake survivors;
  • the Nobel Prize winning and paradigm-shifting discovery of quasi-crystals;
  • pioneering work in data compression, such as the Lempel-Ziv algorithm; and
  • much more ...
Technion research has benefited the world greatly. Alongside these there are important contributions of Technion alumni, including “ReWalk”, a motorized walking assistance system for the paraplegic, developments in semiconductors and data storage and more.
To affirm these, in a recent and comprehensive survey by MIT, the Technion was named sixth in innovation and entrepreneurship amongst universities worldwide.
In addition to these tremendous contributions, we are proud that our university serves as a model of coexistence. The student population includes students from Israel’s various minorities, and nearly a fifth are Arab students from across the country. Side by side, Arab, Jewish and international students study, work and engage in extra-curricular activities.
Therefore, we were extremely surprised by SRC’s call to cut ties with our university. This is no more than a boycott of a link for accumulating knowledge and promoting innovation; a boycott of science and academia. This is a malicious step to undermine a path to support peace, instead of encouraging a model which should be replicated.
We call on our fellow students at the University of Sydney to revoke this unconstructive resolution. We call the administration of the University of Sydney to continue its important cooperation with the Technion, of high value to both institutions and to human progress, peace and stability.