heinrich heine plagiarism case
used under CCO 1.0, via pixabay.com

Annette Schavan, German Education Minister, decided to resign after plagiarism accusations of the officials from the University of Dusseldorf. Angela Merkel accepted her resignation, although that was not easy as Annette was her outstanding consultant and friend.

The Background for Plagiarism Revelation

The investigation of the thesis written in 1989 began after a blogger discovered some similarities and posted on the site, as well as gave interview regarding this issue to a famous German newspaper “Die Welt”.

It was revealed that some parts of Mrs. Schavan’s thesis were copied and the university officials made a decision to void it. Bruno Bleckmann, the professor of ancient history called the dissertation “invalid” and decided “to revoke her doctor title.”

That is what became a deal breaker and that decision kind of offended Mrs. Schavan, so she decided to file a suit, saying “I will not accept this decision and will file suit against it – I neither copied nor deceived in my dissertation. The accusations, as I have said over the past weeks and months, hurt me deeply.”

Public Reaction to Resignation

Angela Merkel encounters plagiarism of her employees for the second time. Previously, Karl Theodor zu Guttenberg, the Defence Minister of Germany was accused of plagiarism found in his doctor thesis in 2006. Mr. Guttenberg explained the reasons of plagiarism instances in his work referring to a busy work schedule. Plagiarism scandal was settled down, and Mr. Guttenberg resigned.

In case of Annette Schavan, public opinion took place, withal a variety of articles stating the point of view of Annette’s resignation, the public opinion had a dubious reaction, and 34 percent wanted her to still obtain a position, while 49 percent believed in her resignation.

Political Implications

There is an assumption that this thesis plagiarism scandal could be caused on purpose. In order for Free Democrats party to gain 5% and enter parliament. Plagiarism allegations is a usual matter when it comes to some political decisions, and lobbying of interests. There is a number of cases when public personas had a chance to avoid any plagiarism allegations, and there are others who has always tried to stick to all the rules aligned with academic integrity standards.

Plethora of high officials plagiarism accusations prove that Kean University had it as well, and top administrator had to do nothing, but resign. 

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *