Lund University having to repeal a decision made by a faculty is a fact seldom seen. The doctoral representative and LTH’s doctoral section‘s president are unanimous: It is common to see faculties ignoring to follow their own rules.
The case concerning the postgraduate student from Iran who lost her position at LTH on false premises was already problematic from the start, according to Aleksandra Popovic, doctoral representative.
– I wish that this situation had been addressed form the very start. I don’t believe it has.
An entire year passed by from the admission of the postgraduate student being revoked by LTH until that decision was repealed by the University board of directions, and the fact that her supervisor was involved in the unraveling procedures was an obvious rule violation, Popovic claims.
– In my opinion, the supervisor was not qualified to participate and he should have refrained from addressing this issue. And this is, unfortunately, only a link in a long chain of rule violations, she says.
– It’s an attitude problem. I believe that the supervisor still up to this point doesn’t realize his mistakes. There is a general mindset within the university sphere that you don’t have to follow rules and that you also don’t find out what the rules say.
Kerstin Johnsson, president of the doctoral student section at LTH, seconds the emotion of Aleksandra Popovic’s.
– Refraining from following rules is a general thing. People have their customized solutions to things and interpret the rules as they so choose. It’s all over the field, both at the University and at LTH.
According to Aleksandra Popovic, the most liable person is the University supreme director, Vice-Chancellor Per Eriksson. It is his authority that has been delegated through several levels down the faculties. But the fact that he is actually revising the LTH decision is a good sign.
– If you find out about rules not being complied with, you have to take responsibility and make sure they are followed. You can delegate assignments, but you can’t delegate your accountability to somebody else.
Text: Tor Gasslander
Translation: Maximilian Aleman Tennell