Update: The reason for these meetings can be better understood in light of the VCU-PM master research services agreement.
Not events I would want or expect to come across on a local calendar …
Nov 7 Philip Morris senior leadership summit (provost and vice presidents only) 3-5 p.m.
Nov 7 Philip Morris reception for deans, PM-funded faculty and DoDs 5-7 p.m.
Aside from their outlandishly inethical practices with regard to manipulating research, publications, and policy, Philip Morris et al. have one product line, and that product line is known to be highly addictive, toxic, and lethal. Profits used to fund tobacco industry grants are earned at the cost of millions of lives and billions of dollars worldwide. Why would any academic health center solicit and accept grants and gifts funded solely and directly through the sale of a product they themselves must counsel each and every patient, employee, faculty, student, and community member to avoid or stop using … an industry in direct conflict with their mission to protect and advance public and personal health.
Instead, an academic legitimacy dream come true: the newly constructed $350+ million Philip Morris USA Center for Research & Technology is the flagship member of Virginia BioTechnology Park, “a joint initiative of Virginia Commonwealth University [which gives PM employees affiliate faculty appointments] and the city of Richmond, situated on 34-acres adjacent to the VCU Medical Center [including the NCI-designated Massey Cancer Center, which lists Philip Morris and Altria among its corporate partners]” and home to the VCU Office of Vice President for Research (with the presidentially appointed VPR on comfortable terms with Philip Morris … also a recipient of NIH funding from ORI’s research on research integrity program).
Update: Science and The Chronicle of Higher Education (which includes a thread of comments) note that Philip Morris ended its PM External Research Program. However, this is not the end of PM funding at Universities.
Meantime, thanks to Orac for posting old cigarette ads like this one reporting a study on the lack of adverse health effects of smoking Chesterfields … seems that fancy new Philip Morris center doesn’t need to do harm reduction research after all: