April 28, 2015


The Committee of Concerned Scientists began as an ad hoc committee in Washington, D.C. and New York City in September 1972. A group of American scientists, physicians and engineers recognized the need to translate their deep concern about their colleagues who are denied their fundamental human rights because of their outspoken political views or their expressed desire to emigrate.

France’s Science Academy Gold Medal Honors Work and Life of Joel Lebowitz

Joel Lebowitz

The Academie des Sciences of the Institute of France awarded its 2014 Grande Medaille, its highest distinction, to Joel Lebowitz, Director of the Rutgers Center for Mathematical Sciences Research and co-chair of the Committee of Concerned Scientists, calling him "a man of science and peace." Besides his prominence as a world leader in statistical physics,  the citation describes Lebowitz, the only  … continue reading >>

CCS Regrets the Death of Andrew Sessler,
Advisory Board Member and Strong Supporter

Photo courtesy of Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory

Dr. Andrew Sessler, CCS Advisory Board member and the former director of Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, passed away on April 1, 2014 after a long illness. "Intensely concerned about human rights, Sessler focused on scientists caught in political situations beyond their control. He wrote letters in support of dissidents in the Soviet Union and other countries. He was active on boards and  … continue reading >>

Jack Minker Gave Talk on His Memoir

Dr. Jack Minker and Sophie Cook with the cover of Scientific Freedom & Human Rights

Dr. Jack Minker, CCS Vice-Chair for Computer Science and University of Maryland Professor Emeritus, gave a talk about his recently published memoir, Scientific Freedom & Human Rights: Scientists of Conscience During the Cold War, at the University of Maryland on October 3. Minker's book documents his work in human rights with CCS and other human rights organizations from 1972 to the  … continue reading >>

Astrophysicist Fang Lizhi, Chinese Activist, Member of CCS Advisory Board, Dies at 76

Fang Lizhi

It is with great sadness that we report the death on April 6, 2012 of our distinguished colleague and Advisory Committee member Fang Lizhi of the University of Arizona. Dr. Fang was a brilliant astrophysicist and influential proponent of human rights in his native China. His political ideals inspired the pro-democracy student movement in China that eventually resulted in the protests at  … continue reading >>

Dr. Jack Minker’s 2011 Pagels Award Acceptance Speech

Dr. Jack Minker

By Jack Minker, Vice-Chair for Computer Science I would like to thank the New York Academy of Sciences Human Rights Committee for honoring me as a co-recipient of the 2011 Heinz R. Pagels Award together with Dr. Binayak Sen of India. I have spoken to several of my colleagues from India at the University of Maryland, who have confirmed that Dr. Sen is an extraordinary humanitarian eminently  … continue reading >>

Dr. Binyak Sen’s 2011 Heinz Pagels Award Acceptance Speech

By Dr. Binayak Sen At the outset, I would like to thank the New York Academy of Sciences for conferring on me the prestigious Heinz R. Pagels Award for Human Rights. I wish it were possible for me to be with you in person on this occasion. Besides my gratitude for this great honour, I also have a personal reason to celebrate a connection with the Academy. My father was a pharmacologist whose  … continue reading >>

A History of the Committee of Concerned Scientists, 1970-2006 – via Columbia University Libraries


The Committee of Concerned Scientists (CCS) is a human rights organization composed of scientists, engineers, and scholars who promote academic and personal freedom for their colleagues worldwide. The Committee supports the rights of scientists to collaborate on research and share data, travel to conferences and meetings, and emigrate if they choose. More broadly, CCS advocates human treatment of  … continue reading >>

Yakov Alpert, 1911-2010

Yakov Alpert with CCS Co-chair Joel Liebowitz

Yakov Alpert, a pioneer in serveral fields of radio and space plasma physics, died on October 17, 2010 in Boston at the age of 99. Alpert participated in Sputnik I and many other Soviet satellite projects in the 1960s and 1970s. He became a Russian refusenik when he applied for an exit visa in 1975. Like all dissident scientists in the U.S.S.R., he lost his job and the right to work in his  … continue reading >>

Liu Xiaobo still imprisoned

Liu Xiaobo

Letter on behalf of Liu Xiaobo by Vaclav Havel, Pavel Landovsky, and Vaclav Maly Originally published in the Washington Post To His Excellency Hu Jintao President of the People's Republic of China Prague, Jan. 6, 2010  … continue reading >>

The CCS Archives at Columbia University

The archives of CCS have been deposited in Columbia University's Rare Book and Manuscript Library. An online finding aid is available at the Library website.  … continue reading >>