Two weeks ago, a group of Serbian expat academics in the UK posted a scathing and detailed critique of the Ph.D. dissertation of Serbian Minister of Internal Affairs, Nebojša Stefanović, alleging plagiarism and academic fraud. The authors claimed that the "procurement of dubious academic degrees ... is a serious problem in the Serbian system of higher education" and promised to "to continue to examine suspicious doctoral and masters dissertations belonging to other public figures in Serbia." The reaction has not been uneventful:
- Immediate denial-of-service attacks were launched against the website publishing the allegations, pescanik.net.
- A strong defense of Stefanović was made by Serbian Prime Minister, Aleksandar Vučić: "I've never heard a more stupid explanation [of plagiarism]".
- The dissertation was verified as "absolutely authentic scientific work" by Mića Jovanović, the rector of the degree-granting insititution in Belgrade, Megatrend University.
- Further investigations by Pescanik revealed that Rector Jovanović's own claim of a Ph.D. from the "University of London" is dubious.
- The Serbian Minister of Education called for Jovanović to resign as rector of Megatrend; he complied.
- Former-Rector Jovanović traveled to London on Friday (in his private jet) to "find his dissertation". He claimed he was successful and would prove everything on Monday.
- Minister Stefanović continues to deny the charges of plagiarism.
University of Alberta Dean of Medicine Philip Baker is so inspired that he plagiarizes graduation speech from one last year at Stanford. He claims only parts were not cited properly as inspiration while grads at the ceremony claim it was an outright lift. The tip-off? "Velluvial matrix." The U of A Guide to Plagiarism here for reference.
Cyber security consultant & self-styled “innovator, leader & visionary” Greg Evans has just written & self-published a book titled How To Become The Worlds No. 1 Hacker. Or did he? His company, LIGATT Security International, counts Philips Arena, the NBA Atlanta Hawks and the NHL Atlanta Thrashers among its clients. Or does it?
"Former Harvard student Adam Wheeler was indicted [yesterday] on multiple counts of identity fraud and larceny. According to the Boston Globe, Wheeler allegedly built a 'fraudulent life history that led to his admission to Harvard, and for using forged academic materials from Harvard when he applied for the prestigious Rhodes and Fulbright scholarships.'"* In his transfer student application to Harvard "...Wheeler claimed he got a perfect score on the SAT, straight A's at prestigious prep school Phillips Academy Andover and at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology...In reality, he had never attended either school..."* He has plead not guilty to the charges. [more inside]
Times Reporter Who Resigned Leaves Long Trail of Deception The New York Times runs a long article detailing its preliminary findings in the matter of Jayson Blair, The Times' young staff reporter who made up sources, facts, and anecdotes in potentially hundreds of stories. Does this investigation help the Times avoid permanent disgrace? Or does this just confirm what you've always thought about the Times? Slate magazine is attributing part of the problem to affirmative action (Blair is black). Is AA relevant here?