The story of the e-mail leaks from the University of East Anglia in the UK has now come to one — of what we’re sure there will be many — conclusions. Back in November the story broke out that Professor Phil Jones and his colleagues at UEA had written e-mails back and forth that some people say were meant to obscure pieces of their climate change research in order to silence their critics. An investigation ensued into whether they were violating the Freedom of Information Legislation of the UK, whether their science was faulty and who on earth stole those e-mails. The first of the three questions has been answered and Professor Jones and UAE have been cleared of wrongdoing.
Parliament’s Science and Technology Committee came to the conclusion that in the future UEA, Professor Jones and the scientific community should be more open about their information when they release studies. They also noted that Professor Jones hasn’t broken any laws and thus is cleared from the record. Though his name is indelibly tangled in this scandal and his future career is still unclear, he won’t be prosecuted. Two following studies on the sturdiness of the science and the person responsible for leaking the e-mails are yet to come.
The panel announced, “insofar as we have been able to consider accusations of dishonesty – for example, Professor Jones’s alleged attempt to “hide the decline” – we consider that there is no case to answer.” The investigation is sure to become future fodder for openness in information in the science world. Although Professor Jones was quoted in the e-mails as writing that they should perhaps delete information the University announced that no information had actually been deleted. The investigation touched on the other issues involved in the scandal but came to no conclusions about them.
Via Business Week