IP Theft

11-Jul-18, 13:48
edited about 9 seconds later
by G57
Avatar for G57
posted about 2 years ago
My daughter has just found out that someone has pretty much lifted her idea from a presentation that she did in Portugal last year. The research project by a university in Spain has just advertised for research staff and the name of the project is just one word different from what her paper was titled and all of her ideas in this paper are similar to what is being proposed in their research. Is there anything that can be done about this? Is this a professional ethics violation and should she make contact with the university vice chancellor about this?
11-Jul-18, 17:31
edited about 26 seconds later
by pm133
Avatar for pm133
posted about 2 years ago
This sort of thing seems to happen all the time.
It is one of the reasons why I resist talking to anyone about ongoing work or potential future work in any sort of forum until I have either published it or at least am almost ready to submit.
People just cannot be trusted in such a competitive arena as academia.
12-Jul-18, 09:32
edited about 58 seconds later
by rewt
Avatar for rewt
posted about 2 years ago
I feel sorry for your daughter G57 but that is a sad part of academia. It is publish or perish and if you have a good idea, it isn't yours until you publish. Even then they can just reference your work. That is why they recommend you to only present work that is close to publication or present at a published conference.

The real question is how identical is it? Like I know someone doing a virtually identical project as mine at a nearby university but he is in a different department with a different approach. We are looking at the same objective and after talking with him, we realized that weren't really competitors as we were doing quite different experiments. Same project outline

If this Spanish group is EXACTLY the same, I can only recommend your daughter to speed up. If they are hiring now, she probably has 3-6 months to get a paper published and beat them to it. Try and work out what their expertise is or what equipment they have and do what they can't. A lot of academic papers are about differentiation and if you can reach the same conclusions with different methods, that is acceptable.

The plus side is that if your daughter does get published first, the Spanish group will have to cite her. Got to get them lovely citations.

EDIT: it isn't IP theft or professional misconduct, it is the ivory tower that is academic research


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