The costs of indiscretion

February 9, 2012

I thank Anthony McIntyre for his response to my letter ("The sin of omission was Boston's, not ours", 2 February), but it misses my point - and proves it at the same time.

No guarantee of confidentiality, no matter how judiciously worded or by whom, can stand under the law, so when writing up their results, researchers need to be extremely careful not to advertise to the world that they are in possession of highly sensitive "guilty knowledge".

If they fail to be discreet, they shouldn't be surprised when the inspectors call.

John D. Brewer, Department of sociology, University of Aberdeen

You've reached your article limit.

Register to continue

Registration is free and only takes a moment. Once registered you can read a total of 3 articles each month, plus:

  • Sign up for the editor's highlights
  • Receive World University Rankings news first
  • Get job alerts, shortlist jobs and save job searches
  • Participate in reader discussions and post comments

Have your say

Log in or register to post comments

Most Commented

James Fryer illustration (27 July 2017)

It is not Luddism to be cautious about destroying an academic publishing industry that has served us well, says Marilyn Deegan

Jeffrey Beall, associate professor and librarian at the University of Colorado Denver

Creator of controversial predatory journals blacklist says some peers are failing to warn of dangers of disreputable publishers

Hand squeezing stress ball
Working 55 hours per week, the loss of research periods, slashed pensions, increased bureaucracy, tiny budgets and declining standards have finally forced Michael Edwards out
Kayaker and jet skiiers

Nazima Kadir’s social circle reveals a range of alternative careers for would-be scholars, and often with better rewards than academia

hole in ground

‘Drastic action’ required to fix multibillion-pound shortfall in Universities Superannuation Scheme, expert warns