More than a whiff of corruption

July 24, 1998

DO THE the Italian university authorities really think that by decentralising the selection procedure (concorsi) for academic posts in their country the entire system's endemic nepotism will be "combatted"?

Alas, my reaction to this news was an incredulous guffaw. Either the powers that be in Italy are even more manipulative than I believe (and I should know - I just resigned from my teaching post at the University of L'Aquila, near Rome, after an 11-year nightmare) or half-witted naivete has suddenly arrived on the scene.

There is far more rotten in the state of Italian universities than a simple reorganisation of the concorsi will fix. Although, of course, the latter themselves have been "fixed" for decades.

Jo Malcolm

St Andrews, Scotland

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