Campus - 16.12.2022 - 16:00 

Accusations of plagiarism: Temporary paid leave of absence at HSG

At the request of Bernhard Ehrenzeller, Rector of the University of St.Gallen (HSG) and the President of the University Council, Education Director Stefan Kölliker, today, Friday, December 16, 2022, issued a provisional measure concerning two professors at HSG.

Leave of absence

Massive accusations have recently been made publicly against two HSG professors. These accusations deal not only with plagiarism, but also the management of a research institute, which is led by both of the accused in co-directorship. Due to ongoing investigations, the two professors have been temporarily relieved from their duties. This provisional release from duties is effective immediately until the conclusion and deliberation of the investigations are completed. 

This serious step was taken because of the growing suspicion surrounding this case and to ensure that those under investigation are not able influence the case. The action has also been done to ensure that the proper day-to-day management of the institute is not interrupted.   

Management of the institute ad interim

In order to ensure the continuation of ordinary business at the affected institute, Prof. Dr. Thomas Friedli, who is not a member of the institute in question, is appointed as the administrator of the institute immediately. As a permanent lecturer with a titular professorship in business administration at HSG, Thomas Friedli is familiar with the topics of the institute.

Disclosure campaign: Establishment of a "Responsibility Committee”

Acting with integrity by all university employees is one of the core values at HSG. In order to emphasize its importance today and in the future and to continue to drive the corresponding cultural change, HSG is forming a high-ranking so-called "Responsibility Committee". This includes the President of the University Council as well as the current and future Rector of the University of St.Gallen. An independent lawyer from outside the canton will until the end of March 2023 act as a contact point for anonymous reporting of grievances. The established reporting offices at HSG will continue to exist. The goal of this committee is to continue to identify and resolve any unresolved problems within HSG and, if necessary, to develop options for action for the University Council or the Rectorate. The focus will be on topics of overarching importance, which include the reputation and culture of the University of St.Gallen.

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