Lecturer stole my PhD thesis, claims foreign student at local varsity

A foreign student at a prominent public university has accused his PhD supervisor of academic theft.

PETALING JAYA: A Yemeni studying in a public university in Malaysia has accused one of his two PhD supervisors of stealing his research paper.

He told FMT the paper was published last year on the university’s official website under the names of the supervisors, but he attributed the alleged theft to only one of them.

The student, who wants to be identified as Aziz, said he contacted the supervisor for an explanation but did not receive a satisfactory response. He then complained to the university’s management, but it had yet to act on it, he added.

Aziz said he was a research assistant with Mimos Berhad when he got “superficially” acquainted with the alleged culprit as a colleague.

“Later, I left for Qatar to work there,” he said.

“In 2015, by which time he had joined the university as a lecturer, he advised me to register for a PhD and work under his supervision. Having worked with me in Mimos, he was aware of my background and research capabilities,” he said.

He said he took the advice and commenced his research. Although he officially had two supervisors, the alleged culprit told him to ignore the co-supervisor and to consult only him, he said.

Aziz provided FMT with what looked like a thread of email communication between him and the supervisors pertaining to his PhD dissertation.

He said he was waiting for the matter to be resolved so that he could complete his PhD.

“I just hope for the withdrawal of the published research paper,” he said. “Or else they should put my name as the first author.”

FMT has contacted the university and is waiting for a response.