Student accuses academician of plagiarism

By Liu Sheng in Shanghai Source:Global Times Published: 2014-1-14 23:23:01

An expert with the Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS) has been accused of plagiarism by a former student, who on Tuesday presented evidence including a damning recording against the academician.

Wang Yucheng, the former student, revealed in November that the academician, Wang Zhengmin, who is an expert at the Fudan University Eye, Ear, Nose and Throat Hospital, copied work from his teacher, eminent Zurich ear expert Ugo Fisch.

In the evidence presented to media on Tuesday, Wang Yucheng, now an ear, nose and throat doctor, revealed two books, one of which was published in 1989 by Wang Zhengmin, and the other one was Ugo Fisch's Tympanoplasty and Stapedectomy, published in 1980.

The two books have the same cover and more than 100 graphs inside are the same, according to Wang Yucheng. "In his book, Wang Zhengmin didn't include any notes or references about Fisch's work," said Wang Yucheng.

Wang Yucheng also revealed a cellphone recording he secretly recorded of a discussion between himself and Wang Zhengmin in 2009, in which Wang Zhengmin seemingly offered him a role in a 200 million yuan ($16.54 million) project, and a leadership role at the Fudan University Eye, Ear, Nose and Throat Hospital.

"I feel quite tired after this, and Fudan University will present my reply," Wang Zhengmin told the Global Times Tuesday in response to the claims.

Wang Zhengmin denied the accusations, and said Wang Yucheng hated him because he had not received any benefits from him. "Wang (Yucheng)asked me to sign on to a training plan, which promised that he would be my tenure secretary and become an ENT academic leader in two years," the academician said earlier at a press conference.

Fudan University firmly stood by its professor. "This is not an academic dispute or rights protection, but a relationship breakdown between a teacher and a student, and the student deliberately plans to destroy the teacher's reputation," Fang Ming, the spokesperson of Fudan University, told the Global Times.

The Academic Committee of Fudan University said Wang's behavior was not plagiarism. It said that depicting many graphs from original works without giving references didn't meet the internationally accepted academic standards, but they were not plagiarism.

Wang Zhengmin also allegedly copied the technology of an Australian-made artificial cochlea during his development of China's homemade product in 2003.

Four out of the seven CAS academicians who recommended Wang Zhengmin become a CAS academician in 2005 have asked the CAS to remove Wang's name from its academician list in October, according to The Beijing News.

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