The University of Vienna has announced the results of its inquiry into the 1988 doctoral dissertation of Bogdan Roscic, who has been appointed director of the Vienna State Opera from 2020.
The inquiry found that Roscic had taken five pages of his introduction from another person’s work. However, these were found to be ‘neither in quantitative nor in qualitative terms’ relevant to the core of the dissertation on the work of Theodor Wiesengrund Adorno. There was also, it concluded, ‘no intention to deceive’.
Roscic, presently head of Sony Classical, was therefore cleared of wrongdoing and is now free to run the opera (unless the next Austrian Government changes its mind).
It’s a very Viennese solution. With an Adorno-like intentional confusion.
The plagiarism researcher Stefan Weber who filed the complaint against Roscic said: ‘If the University of Vienna says that it is not plagiarism, that is a wrong decision. If the University of Vienna says there is plagiarism, but in too small a degree, then that is a margin of discretion.’
We have received the following statement from the University of Vienna:
Bogdan Roščić’s academic degree will not be revoked
University of Vienna closes procedure for investigating plagiarism
In spring, the University of Vienna was notified about plagiarism allegations against Dr. Bogdan Roščić, with reference to similarities with other published material in the introduction of his doctoral thesis. The University of Vienna consequently initiated a procedure for investigating plagiarism and had the doctoral thesis from the year 1988 checked for plagiarism by external assessors. The assessors came to the following conclusion: The similarities between text passages in this doctoral thesis and another doctoral thesis are neither quantitatively nor qualitatively relevant to the thesis. There does not seem to be a fraudulent intent to obtain an academic degree by false pretences. The procedure will be closed; the academic degree will not be revoked.