Wednesday, April 08, 2009

Churchill jury: professorial plagiarism not a fire-able offense?

Further to the Ward Churchill business at CU, InsideHigherEd has some discussion which includes the text:

To find in Churchill's favor, the jury had to determine that his political views were a substantial or motivating factor in his dismissal, and that he would not have been fired but for the controversy over his opinions.

The second part suggests that the jury did NOT think Churchill would have been fired for his plagiarism and ghostwriting, a sad commentary on American higher education, but consistent with the cases of Laurence Tribe and Glenn Poshard, who indeed were NOT fired for whatever they did in the line of plagiarism.

One wonders how the Churchill jury would treat the Taleyarkhan / Purdue matter. The offenses asserted against Taleyarkhan

The report finds Taleyarkhan guilty of misconduct for citing a paper by junior researchers in his lab as if their work was an “independent” replication of his own findings. He is also found guilty of adding the name of a student who had not contributed to the paper as an author, apparently in order to counter a reviewer’s comment that the replication effort seemed to lack witnesses.

seem trifling compared to what Churchill did. For example, Churchill advanced his theories by writing an entire paper under someone else's name.

See previous IPBiz post:
Churchill wins case against CU, and $1

Of Rusi Taleyarkhan:
Purdue report on Taleyarkhan finds misconduct on the smaller issues


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