The moral decay of academia (in progress)

Academia is always regarded as the bastion of morality. Unfortunately, the same is no longer true for our academic circles. Although volumes can be published on the main reasons for this decay, I will try to highlight my point of view using vignettes. Let me by providing you some context first. The journey of PhD is itself arduous considering the amount efforts the scholar must put in achieving academic rigor. A corner stone of this journey is the relationship that the PhD scholar must establish with his/her supervisory team. The supervisors are the most proximal agents of the institution that deal with the scholar. Then there more distant agents such as the graduate research office (GRO) and the external examiners. In the developed countries these distant agents play the role of an impartial control mechanism ensuring that final output of the PhD, the research thesis, is up to standards.

The PhD scholar must first defend his/her proposal and then the final thesis upon its completion. Here is where our system departs from that of the developed countries. Whereas in the developed countries at the stage of the proposal defense only the supervisory committee and representative of the GRO and the department are present. The objective being to ascertain whether the applicant will be able to conduct an independent research.

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