Campus - 20.02.2023 - 16:30 

University of St.Gallen: Withdrawal of the suspension granted to Prof. Dr. Wolfgang Stölzle

The President of the University Council Stefan Kölliker revokes the temporary suspension he had given to Prof. Dr. Wolfgang Stölzle. The work of the investigative commission regarding Mr. Stölzle's institute (ISCM-HSG) is not affected and will be completed as planned. The management of the Institute by Mr. Stölzle will be carried out in consultation with an advisor until the current investigation is concluded.

On February 14, 2023, the division president of the St.Gallen Administrative Court ruled that Mr. Stölzle's appeal would be granted and he would be reinstated with restrictions. This brought clarity to a legal question.

This is because, in contrast to the original assessment of the University management, the court does not consider there to be an acute danger of collusion. However, this assessment has no consequences for the progress of the ongoing investigation into the allegations made in the media against Wolfgang Stölzle as director of the ISCM-HSG. The outcome of the Oberholzer investigation commission, which was appointed on October 26, 2022, must be awaited before any final measures are decided. 

Review: In connection with the "plagiarism affair", the University of St.Gallen had issued a leave of absence to Wolfgang Stölzle as of December 16, 2022. In doing so, HSG did not allow Wolfgang Stölzle to appeal the suspension. The reason given at the time was the danger that Stölzle might support attempts by his colleague to conceal plagiarism. The court has rejected this argument. 

In the reasoning for its decision, the court indicates that they restored his position with restrictions until the final decision. For this reason, the President of the University Council, Stefan Kölliker, has now revoked the suspension, which he had issued to Prof. Dr. Wolfgang Stölzle provisionally on December 16, 2022, and definitively on January 9, 2023.  

Wolfgang Stölzle now has access to the Institute again and can continue to pursue his teaching and research activities. However, the President of the University Council has instructed Wolfgang Stölzle to refrain from doing anything that could interfere with the ongoing investigations at his institute (ISCM-HSG) or the case of the plagiarism affair at his institute colleague.  

Furthermore, Stefan Kölliker has made a decision that until the investigations at the institute (ISCM-HSG) have been completed, Wolfgang Stölzle will only make Institute decisions in consultation with Prof. Dr. Thomas Friedli. 

The suspension of the second professor, who is facing plagiarism allegations, will remain in place.

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