Romania’s education minister resigns after new plagiarism scandal –

Romania’s former education minister, Sorin Cimpeanu, resigned on Thursday, days after he was accused of plagiarizing a university course, a charge he ridiculed in online publications.

The former Minister of Education said he was honored to have started the reforms of the education system and listed some of the changes announced as part of a larger project, “Educated Romania”, the national policy championed by the President Klaus Iohannis.

He said nothing about the accusation, nor mentioned his plans to change education laws to make school fraud harder to punish.

Independent Media Channel PressOne reports that Cimpeanu copied in a university course the work of other professors from the University of Agriculture and Veterinary Medicine in Bucharest.

Initially, Cimpeanu said the aim of those who published the report was to block debates on the education law. Afterwards, he said people calling for his resignation over his plagiarism disclosure were “dopey.”

Iohannis, who in the past was a fierce critic of politicians accused of plagiarism, has remained fairly silent on the case of Cimpeanu, which has enjoyed the support of the president. As Ciuca is also accused of plagiarizing part of his doctoral dissertation, Iohannis has reduced his criticisms in recent months, moving to more general comments regarding academic procedures.

Plagiarism, usually in doctoral dissertations, is a significant problem among politicians across the political spectrum. For example, no less than seven of the 24 education ministers of the post-communist era have been accused of plagiarizing various scientific works. Cimpeanu is only the second of them to resign.

(Bogdan Neagu |

Helen D. Jessen