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Campus - 04.07.2024 - 11:00 

"Disclosure Campaign" of the University of St.Gallen completed

With the publication of a final report, the University of St.Gallen (HSG) has concluded its comprehensive "Disclosure Campaign". The initiative was launched in January 2023 to uncover and rectify any deficits and shortcomings found at the University.

The Disclosure Campaign was initiated by the then Director of Education and President of the University Council of HSG, Stefan Kölliker, in the course of reporting on the management of the Institute of Supply Chain Management (ISCM-HSG) and the so-called "plagiarism affair". Its aim was to identify and clear up challenging issues within HSG and, if necessary, to draw up options for action for the University Council and the President’s Board. Students, staff, researchers and lecturers were invited to actively participate in the University’s self-examination. The independent contact point, managed by the law firm Rudin Cantieni Rechtsanwälte AG, received 37 reports over a period of just under three months, most of which were anonymous.

Comprehensive investigations

HSG evaluated all reports submitted and investigated them in depth where necessary. In 27 of the 37 cases received, no additional measures, decisions or adjustments were required. One reason for this was, for example, that reports concerned earlier cases that had been dealt with and concluded independently of the disclosure action. Further steps were taken in 10 of the 37 cases received. These concerned three reports on academic integrity, six reports on personnel management and one report on sexual harassment, although this was only indirectly related to the University. In the case of reports relating to new facts, the offices and persons concerned, were clearly named and identified, were asked to comment and further investigations were carried out. Once all of the investigations had been completed, a summary final report could be drawn up.

Various measures taken

The final report, which was recently submitted to the University Council, shows that measures were taken in 10 cases. As many of the reports related to doctoral students, the previously initiated doctoral reform should be highlighted in particular. This was approved by the Senate of the University of St.Gallen in May 2023 and will lead to substantial improvements in working conditions for doctoral students.

The "Disclosure Campaign" also confirmed that not all members of the University were sufficiently aware of the existing contact points for complaints. For this reason, the new landing page www.unisg.ch/advice was created to bundle information on advisory services. To publicize the URL, raise awareness among students and staff and strengthen trust in the relevant offices, an awareness campaign ran on campus for several weeks at the start of the autumn semester 2023/24.

Special thanks go to all those involved who contributed to the successful implementation of this campaign. The University Council and President’s Board are relieved to note that no structural grievances have come to light and only a few previously unknown cases have been reported. It goes without saying that all members of the University can continue to contact the relevant contact points in confidence.

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