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No, Prime Minister: PhD Plagiarism of High Level Public Officials

  • Theodor Tudoroiu (a1)

Abstract

Based on a public office definition of corruption, this article uses the case studies of doctoral plagiarism of German Minister of Defence Karl-Theodor zu Guttenberg, Hungarian President Pàl Schmitt, Romanian Prime Minister Victor Ponta, and Russian President Vladimir Putin in order to show that, by shattering citizens’ confidence in and respect for political class, political parties, state institutions and rule of law, academic plagiarism of high-ranking politicians intertwines with and enforces the most serious democratic failures in their respective countries: degeneration of political culture in Germany, nationalist authoritarian trends in Hungary, a culture of corruption in Romania, and outright dictatorship in Russia. As such, this specific type of plagiarism goes far beyond academia. It represents a direct, aggressive, and effective threat against democracy itself.

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