Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Legislator Apollo Chen (陳學聖) yesterday accused President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) of self-plagiarism, saying he believed that she had simply translated work from her English-language London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE) doctoral dissertation in a Chinese-language article she wrote.
Information that the Presidential Office shared at a news conference on Sept. 23 showed that Tsai turned in her LSE dissertation in June 1983, completed the oral defense in October that year and received notification in January 1984 that she had passed the defense.
At a meeting of the Legislative Yuan’s Education and Culture Committee yesterday, Chen said that in the same month Tsai submitted her dissertation, a Chinese-language article authored by her was published in National Chengchi University’s (NCCU) Chengchi Law Review titled “The Protection of the Chinese Market in International Trade — GATT Article 19, VER and MFA” (國際貿易中國市場之保護 — GATT 第十九條, VER及MFA).
Photo: Chien Jung-fong, Taipei Times
Chen said that although he did not know which of the two was submitted first, the contents of Chapter 5 of the dissertation and the article are “highly repetitive and similar.”
More than half of each document can be seen as English and Chinese versions of the other, he said, adding that neither the dissertation nor the article mentions the existence of or cites the other.
Minister of Education Pan Wen-chung (潘文忠) cited self-plagiarism for refusing to promote former Shu-Te University assistant professor Chen Pi-yun (陳碧雲) to associate professor, Apollo Chen said, adding that Ministry of Education guidelines in cases involving academic ethics at university level or above state that the use of large portions of an author’s own previously published work without appropriate citation is self-plagiarism.
Apollo Chen asked whether the ministry would revoke Tsai’s promotion from associate professor to professor at NCCU — a process that included use of the article in her academic credentials — if the ministry finds that she did plagiarize herself.
Pan said that the ministry would follow new procedural laws and old substantive laws, as well as other regulations, to handle any investigation, when and if a report is filed.
An investigation would be launched according to procedures, he said, adding that such inquiries typically take four months.
In academic ethics cases, an institution first needs to investigate whether the allegations are true or false, Department of Higher Education Director-General Chu Chun-chang (朱俊彰) said.
The institute would then forward its decision to the ministry, which would review it, Chu said.
Later yesterday, the Presidential Office said in a statement that Apollo Chen was “pointing to a deer and calling it a horse.”
It is common practice in academia for unpublished dissertations to be submitted to and published in reviewed journals or books, it said.
Dissertations that have not been published as journal articles are considered “unpublished academic achievements,” it said, adding that most academics submit their doctoral dissertations for review to be published in journals or books.
The “farce” of accusations over Tsai’s education and dissertation should end here, it said.
Apollo Chen said that while submitting content from doctoral dissertations to journals is common practice, self-citations still need to be disclosed.
The Presidential Office is attempting to confuse people by avoiding discussion of the citation requirements and brushing over the issue by saying it is “academic convention,” Apollo Chen added.
Additional reporting by Su Yung-yao and Lin Liang-sheng
FATAL FIRE: The health department is trying to contact the inspector who visited the site of the illegal nursing home to ask why they did not advise follow-up checks The Taipei City Government yesterday said that a health department inspector last year had visited the site of a long-term care facility in Neihu District (內湖) after receiving a report questioning its status. A fire broke out at the facility on Tuesday afternoon, killing three people. The Taipei Fire Department said that it received a report about a fire on the first floor of a four-story residential building on Kangning Road Sec. 1 at 2:38pm on Tuesday, firefighters arrived at 2:43pm and the fire was put out by 3:07pm. The firefighters found three men in beds and rushed them to hospital for
Taipei City Councilor Wang Hao (王浩) of the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) on Monday called for security improvements to the MRT, as fare evasion has increased more than 13-fold on the metropolitan railway system over the past five years. Taipei Mayor Ko Wen-je (柯文哲) has spoken out against fare evasion and other contraventions of MRT regulations, but since he took office in 2015 the number of contraventions has more than doubled, Wang said, adding that there were 537 cases in 2015 compared with 959 last year. A video was posted to YouTube in June showing people how to evade paying a fare,
FEELING MISUNDERSTOOD: Media speculation has fueled confusion about the KMT’s reasons for skipping a Chinese forum and delaying an AIT meeting, party sources said The Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) on Sunday said that it is not seeking to improve relations with the US or China at the expense of the other, and that its relations with the countries would be topic-based. The party has faced questions over its foreign policy after it on Monday last week announced its withdrawal from the annual Straits Forum and delayed planned talks with the American Institute in Taiwan (AIT). The party has also taken a tough stance on the importation of US meat containing ractopamine, while also lambasting China for increasing its military activity in and around the Taiwan Strait. Following
Yuchi Township (魚池) fishers have appealed to the Nantou County Government for help in dealing with an invasive fish species in Sun Moon Lake (日月潭), where it has devastated the local ecosystem. Fishers at Sun Moon Lake have been using electrofishing in an attempt to eliminate the giant snakehead fish — found in Africa and Southeast Asia — but they have struggled to keep up with the growing population of the species, which breeds during September and October, the county government said on Monday. The county has contacted researchers at National Tsing Hua University, saying it hoped they could come up