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Harvard’s chief diversity officer Sherri Ann Charleston accused of plagiarism: report

Harvard’s chief diversity officer Sherri Ann Charleston accused of plagiarism: report
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Harvard University’s chief diversity and inclusion officer has been hit with dozens of plagiarism allegations tied to her academic work — including one claim she failed to properly cite her own husband’s study.

The Ivy League school was handed an anonymous complaint on Monday listing at least 40 examples of alleged plagiarism by Sherri Ann Charleston dating back to 2009 — a decade before she joined Harvard, the Washington Free Beacon reported.

The allegations, which include failing to properly cite other scholars’ work and not referencing them in footnotes, come just weeks after Harvard University president Claudine Gay resigned from her top post after becoming embroiled in a scandal over charges that she plagiarized work and her handling of antisemitism on campus.

According to the Beacon, which conducted its own analysis of the complaint, Charleston allegedly quoted or paraphrased a dozen scholars without adequate attribution in her 2009 dissertation at the University of Michigan.

The complaint also alleges Charleston ultimately took credit for a study that her husband, LaVar Charleston — currently the University of Wisconsin-Madison’s deputy vice chancellor for diversity and inclusion — wrote in 2012.

Harvard University’s chief diversity and inclusion officer, Sherri Ann Charleston, has been accused of plagiarism. Harvard University
The complaint alleges that Charleston failed to properly cite a study written by her husband, LaVar Charleston, in 2009. University of Wisconsin

That alleged instance of plagiarism came after Charleston rehashed large portions of her husband’s paper in a peer-reviewed article they co-authored in 2014, according to the complaint.

The 2014 article, published in the Journal of Negro Education, had the same findings, method and survey subject descriptions included in Charleston’s husband’s original paper, the complaint charges.

“You cannot just republish an old paper as if it is a new paper,” Lee Jussim, a social psychologist at Rutgers University, told the outlet. “If you do, that is not exactly plagiarism; it’s more like fraud.”

Charleston joined Harvard as the school’s first chief diversity officer in 2020. hoto by Scott Eisen/Getty Images

Charleston didn’t immediately respond to The Post’s request for comment about the plagiarism allegations.

Reps for Harvard also didn’t respond on whether they were probing the claims.

In addition to Harvard, the complaint was reportedly filed with the University of Michigan and the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

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Charleston, a historian, joined Harvard as the school’s first chief diversity officer in late 2020 after holding a similar role at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

Former Harvard University president Claudine Gray resigned after being accused of plagiarism. Photo by Kevin Dietsch/Getty Images

The fresh allegations are just the latest tranche of claims leveled against Harvard-affiliated researchers or employees after the Ivy League school’s president stepped down from her prestigious post following weeks of controversy over her own academic record.

Gay’s academic career came under intense scrutiny after she was hit with nearly 50 accusations of plagiarism or inadequate citation.

After The Post initially took the claims of Gay copying others’ work to Harvard, the university denied them and brought in its legal attack dogs to threaten to sue for “immense” damages.

The anonymous complaint was filed at Harvard, the University of Michigan and the University of Wisconsin-Madison. David McGlynn

However, days later, Gay herself asked for an investigation, and experts found she did need to make multiple corrections to her academic record. In December, Gay had to correct her own dissertation.

Earlier this month, a Harvard University-affiliated teaching hospital, the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, revealed it was seeking to retract or correct dozens of papers authored by four of its top researchers following a probe into allegations of data falsification.




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