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Volume 89 Issue 42 | p. 6 | Letters
Issue Date: October 17, 2011

More On Sezen/Sames

Department: Letters

Because I have an academic connection to one of the students who could not reproduce the experiments faked by Bengü Sezen in the chemistry department laboratory of Dalibor Sames at Columbia University, I know of some of the anguish and suffering endured by these students during this time (C&EN, Aug. 8, page 40). The blatantly unethical actions of Sames, tacitly supported by the Columbia administration by its blanket of silence, have dramatically altered if not harmed the lives of three quite promising young scientists.

Pressures on untenured faculty to publish are not an excuse, and Columbia has tarnished rather than protected its image in the sciences. The article by William Schulz mentions these students, but it is clear that no one had their interests in mind and that even rudimentary checks and balances were not followed to protect whistle-blowers. How can the chemical community recommend students at any level to an institution wherein the quest for new knowledge is subjugated to mentor and university expediencies?

By Charles Michael Drain
New York City

 
Chemical & Engineering News
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