Boston University’s (BU) audit of its Center for Antiracist Research (CAR) found “no issues” or “concerns” with its finances, despite the center taking in tens of millions of dollars and producing little original research, according to a BU press release.
The CAR, founded by antiracist scholar Ibram X. Kendi, let go of nearly 20 staff members in September and, during its three years of operation, produced two academic papers after receiving over $43 million in outside funding. BU opened an investigation into the center following accusations of financial mismanagement and a “dysfunctional” work culture, which found “no issues with how CAR’s finances were handled” and said that “expenditures were appropriately charged to their respective grant and gift accounts,” according to a Tuesday press release.
“Our auditors concluded that CAR’s financial management of its grants and gifts was appropriate,” Gary Nicksa, BU’s chief financial officer and treasurer, said in a press release.
The CAR’s mission is to “understand, explain, and solve seemingly intractable problems of racial inequity and injustice,” according to its website. It also promotes “racial research,” policies and educational and advocacy campaigns.
The center will “move away from staff and faculty executing CAR projects and programs and into a structure in which fellows will be in residence at BU for nine months conducting their own individual projects,” according to the press release. It will now be at half capacity following the changes to the structure.
Kendi’s CAR received millions in funding from liberal groups and individuals. The center received $1.5 million from the Rockefeller Foundation, $10 million from Twitter founder Jack Dorsey and nearly $138,000 from George Soros’ Foundation to Promote Open Society.
Phillipe Copeland, a former employee of the center, said it “was just being mismanaged on a really fundamental level,” according to the Boston Globe. Another former employee, Saida Grundy, said she doesn’t “know where the money is.”
Grundy alleged in a December 2021 email to BU provost Jean Morrison that the center had a “pattern of amassing grants without any commitment to producing the research obligated,” according to the Globe.
One of the research papers produced by the center theorized that conflating “merit with idealized images of White masculinity provoke unconscious distress in White men who aspire to meet those ideals.”
Another paper compared differences in the structures of white neighborhoods and minority neighborhoods. It found that minority neighborhoods had less green space and less maintained structures, and that studying the neighborhoods further might “improve understanding of how structural racism manifested through the built environment is associated with poor health outcomes.”
BU and the CAR did not immediately respond to the Daily Caller News Foundation’s request for comment.
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