Peking University Loses Plagiarism Lawsuit

Matthew Walsh:

China’s most prestigious university has lost a legal case in which it claimed that a former student had plagiarized her Ph.D. dissertation, according to a court statement seen Wednesday by The Paper, Sixth Tone’s sister publication.

Yu Yanru, a former doctoral student in history who had her dissertation annulled by Peking University (PKU) in January 2015, successfully argued that the school’s appraisal procedure for determining whether her work had been falsified was unfair and unlawful.

On Tuesday, PKU was ordered by the Haidian District People’s Court in Beijing to overturn the annulment, a move that had effectively voided Yu’s degree. The court said in its statement that China’s procedures for annulling degrees lacked clear guidelines, but that PKU “did not fully listen to Ms. Yu’s explanation and defense,” thereby violating “correct procedural principles.”