Retraction Watch

Tracking retractions as a window into the scientific process

No academic post for fraudster Diederik Stapel, after all

with 13 comments


Diederik Stapel

Recently, we reported that social psychologist and renowned data faker Diederik Stapel had found himself a new gig supporting research at a vocational university in the Netherlands — but it appears that was short-lived.

According to multiple news reports, NHTV Breda will not be employing Stapel, after all.

Here’s our Google translate of a portion from De Telegraaf:

[Stapel’s] work at the NHTV have been terminated after one week. This was announced by the Breda college Tuesday.

And this from NOS:

The social psychologist Diederik Stapel do not get a second chance at the College of Tourism and Transport in Breda (NHTV).

Staff and the MR have too many objections to the appointment of the controversial scientist. Therefore, the school decides to reverse the appointment…

Omroep Brabant includes Stapel’s reaction to the news:

[Stapel] himself said Tuesday on Radio 1 that he was sad about the quick dismissal. “I was pleased with the new job…”

Stapel’s last academic appointment at Fontys Academy in Tilburg in 2014 was short-lived; he resigned around the same time he admitted sock puppetry in comments here at Retraction Watch.

Stapel has retracted dozens of papers, settled with Dutch prosecutors and agreed to 120 hours of community service, after resigning from Tilburg University and relinquishing his PhD.

Update 9/14/16 9:35 a.m. eastern: We’ve received a press release from NHTV about the announcement; here’s an excerpt, according to our Google translate:

At the request of the Participation Council to reconsider the cooperation of the Executive Board of the university decided to terminate the cooperation with him.

Although the Board has formally acted correctly, the Participation Council, the Executive convinced that with many employees within the university insufficient confidence in the collaboration. The cooperation is not productive, and therefore it was decided the consulting agreement no further effect.

Hat tip: Stephen Buranyi

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Written by Alison McCook

September 13th, 2016 at 1:38 pm

  • Jeffrey Beall September 13, 2016 at 1:44 pm

    So, they retracted his job offer? How fitting.

  • Marcel van Assen September 13, 2016 at 1:49 pm

    Sigh. I know why, but still, the institute could have benefited from his knowledge and experience.

    • Dean September 13, 2016 at 1:57 pm

      We know what his knowledge and experience are in. Now he is learning that choices have consequences. No one to blame except the face in the mirror.

    • Seb September 14, 2016 at 4:54 am

      As if there are no other candidates available with similar knowledge but without being a fraudster.

  • rfg September 13, 2016 at 1:50 pm

    This is the proper decision by the College of Tourism and Transport in Breda (NHTV).

    Usually not good policy to give to the sly fox the duties to guard the henhouse.

  • Neuroskeptic September 13, 2016 at 2:03 pm

    This decision means that an honest applicant will be given a job.

  • firststone September 14, 2016 at 11:05 pm

    All the sanctimonious posturing here and elsewhere. Hands/mouths dripping with blood, having got his/her pound of flesh …

    Remember: ‘He that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone’

    Who among you then, can cast the first stone? Anyone?

    • Lee Rudolph September 15, 2016 at 8:36 am

      Those who make it their business to theorize (and theologize) about “sin”, and have a professional interest in quoting that particular cautionary saying, also have elucidated the notion of “a near occasion of sin”. I am not such a professional, but it seems to me that they, while fully endorsing that saying, would want everyone involved to think twice before placing even the most reformed and penitent of sinners into a position where the temptation to again commit the sin—and, no doubt worse, to seduceinstruct others in its commission—is intrinsic (even, defining!) of the position.

      Of course there have been many examples in the news where just such experts apparently did not think twice; that doesn’t make it any less desirable that they should do so. But perhaps you have another cautionary saying or two for our consideration?

  • The Cat September 15, 2016 at 6:06 am

    Do you mean that, in your view, everybody is guilty of falsifying research results? What does this say about you?

    • firststone September 15, 2016 at 10:59 am

      It says that I’m an utter cynic.

  • Neuroskeptic November 15, 2016 at 8:23 am

    Stapel is working in an addiction clinic?

    Well, so long as he is in a purely clinical or administrative role and isn’t involved in research in any way, maybe that’s no bad thing.

  • Klaas van Dijk November 15, 2016 at 10:19 am

    Rodersana is indeed an addiction clinic. See for a press release of this addiction clinic with backgrounds of this new job (in Dutch). As far as I am aware, Stapel his new job is pure clinical.

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