NATIONAL SCIENCE FOUNDATION OFFICE OF INSPECTOR GENERAL OFFICE OF INVESTIGATIONS CLOSEOUT MEMORANDUM Case Number: A06010002 Page 1of 2 I n January 2006, the complainant1 called OIG and made allegations which can be broadly classified a s (1)programmatic issues, (2) maltreatment of a subordinate, and (3) intellectual theft. The PI (subject)2 had a grant to take a group of researchers (including targeted minority students) to a foreign country to conduct field work. (1) The subject allegedly hand-picked non-minority students to take instead of qualified, minority students. While i n the foreign country, the P I allegedly knew about, and did nothing to stop, alcohol and drug use by the students and a sexual relation between a student and a senior advisor. These complaints appeared programmatic in nature and were referred to the NSF Program Director.3 He said he would contact the grantee and reaffirm NSF's goals of the program and his expectations of a research environment. (2) The complainant alleged one student became seriously ill while i n the foreign country, and the subject lied to the grantee about it. After the illness, the subject allegedly removed the student from participation i n the program and ostracized her. The subject also allegedly ostracized the complainant when she spoke up on behalf of the student. These complaints are best addressed by the grantee's Office of Equal Opportunity, and we referred the complainant to t h a t office. The complainant was prohibited from participating in the project after her return from the foreign country. Since the grantee h a s responsibility for the completion of the project, and the complainant was neither PI nor co-PI, the grantee may remove her without approval from NSF. (3) The complainant said she was the originator of the idea that led to the proposal and grant. The complainant approached the subject and another collaborator,4 and they gave a presentation to the grantee with all three names on it. The complainant said the subject later orally claimed the idea was hers and continues to do so. Since the complainant agreed to add the subject's and Footnote redacted. 2 Footnote redacted. 3 Footnote redacted. 4 Footnote redacted. NATIONAL SCIENCE FOUNDATION OFFICE OF INSPECTOR GENERAL OFFICE OF INVESTIGATIONS CLOSEOUT MEMORANDUM Case Number: A06-02 Page 2 of 2 collaborator's names to her proposed research a s equals, and there was no agreement to segregate contributions, all three can use ideas i n t h a t presentation for future research, which is what the subject h a s done. I n summary, most of the allegations were not within the jurisdiction of OIG, and they have been referred to the appropriate offices. The intellectual theft allegation has insufficient substance to proceed. Accordingly, this case is closed.
Intellectual Theft Mentoring / Abuse Issues (Non-NSF) Retaliation
Published by the National Science Foundation, Office of Inspector General on 2006-05-31.
Below is a raw (and likely hideous) rendition of the original report. (PDF)