Science is rife with corruption, incompetence, dishonesty and fabrication–and now, thanks to a frank resignation letter by the US’s top scientific misconduct official we have a better idea why.
David E. Wright, a respected science historian, has just quit his job as director of the Office of Research Integrity (ORI; part of the Department of Health and Human Services) and is scathing about his experiences there.
In his resignation letter, he accuses his boss HHS Assistant Secretary for Health Howard Koh of running an organization which is “secretive, autocratic and unaccountable.”
He writes to Koh:
In one instance, by way of illustration, I urgently needed to fill a vacancy for an ORI division director. I asked the Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary for Health (your deputy) when I could proceed. She said there was a priority list. I asked where ORI’s request was on that list. She said the list was secret and that we weren’t on the top, but we weren’t on the bottom either. Sixteen months later we still don’t have a division director on board.
His experiences at ORI, he adds, have confirmed all his worst suspicions about the workings of federal bureaucracy.