The Collected Works subseries includes correspondence, testimony and statements presented to the committees or at public forums, journal and magazine articles, newspaper clippings, records of congressional hearings on the topic of recombinant DNA, correspondence and statements of the regents and other university officials on the topic, and files collected by several individuals prominent in the discussion including Carl Cohen.
Among the significant files are statements issued by the Ann Arbor City Council and the Ann Arbor Ecology Center; Correspondence, 1974-1982; and environmental impact statement; and files relating to a forum on DNA containing material relating to a public discussion of DNA research held at the University of Michigan in 1976.
Individual files of Carl Cohen Helling, Robert Skolimowski, Henryk and Wright, Susan contain not simply material collected by these people, but also statements and notes by them which did not fit comfortably into other files.
Files of the National Institute of Health (NIH), the. agency set guidelines for DNA research, contains the guidelines from 1976-1978, material from the NIH's Recombinant DNA Molecule Program Advisory Committee, and a folder of miscellanea.
Articles and publications includes material from the poplar and scientific press. Included among them are several articles written by Carl Cohen, and a chapter entitled "The Discussion of Recombinant DNA at the University of Michigan" by Alvin Zander for a book edited by Steven Stich and David Jackson called The Recombinant DNA Debate (1976).
Files relating to the Regents of the University of Michigan include correspondence, Sarah Power, Thomas Roach (both of whom were Regents at this time), Statements (made to the Regents) and Miscellanea.
The United States Congress file consists mostly of material from the Subcommittee on Science, Research and Technology of the House Committee on Science and Technology. The file is divided into "Hearings/Testimony" and "Legislation."
A file title, Miscellanea. includes interesting documents which, for lack of a better category, are located here. These include a paper discussing University Policies and Biological Hazards, and the architects' proposed plan for renovating existing laboratories.
Unlike other controversies over the role of the University with regard to research, the papers in this collection do not suggest widespread student participation in the DNA debate. Nevertheless, several possible themes for historical research exist. Among these are the relations and tensions between the university and the larger society, between the sciences and humanities, between freedom of inquiry and limitations, and between the "experts" and the people. Reading the statements by various scientists and nonscientists may shed some light on the question of how the scientific community sets its agenda, and the larger issue of for whom and for what science is intended.