We’ve verified with the university that Förster no longer works there, but the circumstances of his exit are not entirely clear.
Förster’s research has faced considerable scrutiny in the past few years. A 2015 report describing an investigation into Förster’s work concluded that several of his papers likely contained unreliable data. Three of those papers have been retracted and four others have received expressions of concern. Förster, however, has denied allegations that he manipulated his data. In 2015, he turned down a prestigious professorship, citing the personal toll the investigation had taken.
We’ve contacted Förster to ask about the decision to leave his post at Ruhr-Universität Bochum and open his own practice in Cologne, Germany. Although we have not heard back yet, the website for his new practice states that Förster left Ruhr-Universität Bochum in September 2017 and opened the “Foundation of Nussbaum and Förster: Systemic Institute for Positive Psychology” in October with Manfred Nussbaum. (Nussbaum’s bio says he is a trained therapist.)
In Förster’s bio (which we translated from German to English with Google translate), he writes he is “extremely happy” to be in his new practice:
I have mastered some crises myself and now understand them as an opportunity to initiate important change processes. However, you often need an outside person to look at the situation. This person could be me for you.
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