|Conflict of Interest||Case Study Reviewr|
graduate student is being paid to work on a research project that is funded
by a private corporation. The student is using the data that he is collecting
for his dissertation. The faculty member directing the research project
is also the student’s advisor. This is the faculty member’s
first research project funded by this corporation. Getting the initial funding
was difficult and highly competitive. However, if the research project is
completed on time and the results look promising, the company
has indicated that it will be willing to fund future projects. As the
faculty member will be applying for tenure within the next two years, and
levels of external funding for research activities are a factor in the tenure
decision , she is very eager to finish this project on time.
At a weekly meeting, the faculty advisor and student review the data that the student has collected to-date. They estimate that the student has about two more months of data collection for his dissertation. After the meeting when reviewing the progress of the research project, the faculty member anticipates that there is at least six more months of data collection needed for the project. She realizes that once the graduate student gathers enough data for his dissertation, he won’t be working on the project as much, if at all, and she does not have time to train another student or technician.
At the next weekly meeting, the faculty member
tells the student that she has reviewed the data collected by the student
to-date and his dissertation proposal, and has concluded that the student
will not be able to collect enough data in the two next months for his
dissertation. More precisely, she
estimates that the student will have to continue working for at least
another four months, or maybe even until the end of the research study
. The student is very
disappointed as he thought that the data he had collected to-date
seemed very promising.