While Harvard's investments in United States firms operating in South Africa has recently drawn national attention, Radcliffe College has been quietly reexamining its own relationship with those firms.
Monday the Trustees' Executive Committee of Radcliffe College considered the Harvard Corporation's recently released report on South Africa, and decided informally to approve it, although the Committee has taken no formal action on the report, Radcliffe administrators said yesterday.
"We've read the Corporation statement and we find ourselves in complete sympathy with it, "Robert H. Gardiner '37, Radcliffe Treasurer and the official responsible for making Radcliffe shareholder decisions, said yesterday.
Burton I.Wolfman, administrative dean of Radcliffe, said yesterday Radcliffe officials "will meet informally with staff and members of the ACSR to see about piggybacking on their work--whether it's ethical and practical."
"Harvard has gone through a rather elaborate process of gaining information", and Radcliffe may not want to go through the entire deliberations again, he said. "We many add to that process since there may well be a feminine point of view on some of these issues", he added.
If it proves impossible to use the work of the ACSR and the Investor Responsibility Research Center, which Harvard helped set up in 1973 to investigate the social and ethical implications of investment decisicns, then Radcliffe may have to set up its own stock advisory structure, Wolfman said.
Members of the Southern Africa Solidarity Committee said yesterday they have not asked the Radcliffe Trustees to take the same actions they have been urging the Corporation to adopt because "many people didn't realize the Harvard and Radcliffe portfolios were completely separate."
If at First...
"People thought by getting the Corporation to do something that would include Radcliffe too, and I hadn't heard about the Radcliffe thing until this week," one SASC members said.
Neva Magketla '78, an SASC member, said yesterday, "Radcliffe should immediately divest itself ot its holdings in all banks that have made loans to the South African government, like First National Bank of Boston and the Bank of America".
According to the June 1977 treasurer's report, Radcliffe owns $480,000 of stock in the Bank of America and about 140,000 of stocks and bonds in First National Bank of Boston, as well as holdings in other South African-related banks.
"It's highly unlikely we'll divest our stock in companies in South Africa," Gardiner said, adding that although the Corporation report recommended against divestiture except in extreme cases, "we reserve the right to make our own decisions.
Gardiner decided yesterday to abstain on a shareholder resolution in Eastman Kodak that would end sales of the company's photographic equipment to the government of South Africa, because "I was not well informed enough about it to vote for it.
The Harvard Corporation last week decided to support the resolution