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North Carolina universities warned against anticompetitive behavior in faculty hiring

by Andrea Widener
May 25, 2019 | APPEARED IN VOLUME 97, ISSUE 21


The US Department of Justice has intervened in a lawsuit to prevent two North Carolina universities from engaging in anticompetitive behavior in faculty hiring. Under a proposed settlement agreement, Duke University will drop a “no poach” agreement with the University of North Carolina that prevented competition over medical school faculty. A 2015 lawsuit filed against Duke by radiologist Danielle Seaman, then an assistant professor at the Duke University School of Medicine, alleged that an illegal agreement between the schools kept salaries low and stopped faculty from moving. Her lawsuit was later expanded into a class action representing all faculty at both Duke and UNC medical schools. The settlement prohibits Duke from entering into any noncompetitive agreement for 5 years, and the school must implement a system to prevent any anticompetitive behavior going forward. If the judge grants the Justice Department the right to intervene, then the department will be allowed to enforce the settlement in court.



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JW (May 25, 2019 9:49 PM)
This is pretty bad. Reading a story like this makes me happy I left Academia and moved to the private sector. I wonder if agreements exist keeping postdoc salaries as low as primary and secondary school teacher salaries. Maybe this is the reason why a relatively
low percent of native born US citizens pursue advanced degrees in physical and life sciences. The cost/time to benefit is just not there anymore.

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