09 September 2009

More background on the 'academic harassment' issue

For more background on the issue of academic harassment, the Ogoshi case is illuminating. In this case the individual who was wronged brought a suit against the institution.

I found this article from Science reproduced in full at the Sciencemag.org site. The one thing the case shows is that even if you win a court case against a company or school in Japan, it is often hard to get any enforcement of the settlement. The article is excerpted below.


excerpt (see link for full text):

The Job Market
Academic Harassment

By Dennis Normile

February 02, 2001

This article appears in the February 2, 2001 issue of Science magazine.

TOKYO-- For most people, winning a court case is the end of the battle. But for Kumiko Ogoshi it was just another round in her fight against discrimination and harassment in Japanese universities, a problem that many women faculty members say has marginalized them at institutions throughout the country. And victory seems far away.

Last fall, Ogoshi, a research associate at Nara Medical University, made Japanese legal history when a district court found her supervising professor guilty of harassing her in an attempt to get her to quit (Science, 27 October 2000, p. 687). The court ordered Nara Prefecture, which runs the school, to pay $5000 in compensation. But the verdict didn't have the impact that she had hoped. "There was no reflection [by university authorities] upon the significance of the court ruling," she says. "They filed their appeal the next day, and they seem to think they can just go on as they always have."

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