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

Featured Jobs

Most Commented

Monster behind man at desk

Despite all that’s been done to improve doctoral study, horror stories keep coming. Here three students relate PhD nightmares while two academics advise on how to ensure a successful supervision

Female professor

New data show proportion of professors who are women has declined at some institutions

opinion illustration

Eliminating cheating services, even if it were possible, would do nothing to address students’ and universities’ lack of interest in learning, says Stuart Macdonald

John McEnroe arguing with umpire. Tennis

Robert MacIntosh and Kevin O’Gorman explain how to negotiate your annual performance and development review

Reflection of man in cracked mirror

To defend the values of reason from political attack we need to be more discriminating about the claims made in its name, says John Hendry