December 6, 2022

Harvard morality expert resigns

Harvard neuroscientist Marc D. Hauser, a popular teacher and writer, will resign on August 1. Nearly a year ago an internal investigation found him guilty of eight instances of scientific misconduct and in April the psychology department voted not to allow him to teach when classes begin in the fall.

Harvard neuroscientist Marc D. Hauser, a
popular teacher and writer, will resign on August 1. Nearly a year ago an
internal investigation found him guilty of eight instances of scientific
misconduct and in April the psychology department voted not to allow him to
teach when classes begin in the fall.

In his resignation letter, Hauser says that
he plans to focus on “new and interesting challenges”, including
“extremely interesting and rewarding work focusing on the educational
needs of at-risk teenagers” and “exciting opportunities in the
private sector.”

It may be years before a full report on
Hauser’s alleged misconduct is published. However, it appears that there had
been problems with the authenticity of the data in several of his papers.

At last report, Viking Penguin still plans
to publish Hauser’s next book, Evilicious: Explaining Our Evolved Taste for
Being Bad. As the author of several popular books, Hauser was a spokesman for
the view that morality is biologically based and that no actions are inherently
right or wrong. However, his sudden fall from grace does not appear to have
cast a shadow on this increasingly accepted view. ~ ScienceInsider,
July 20

Michael Cook
Harvard
Marc Hauser
morality
neuroscience