Turkey Central Banker Under Investigation Over PhD Thesis

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The doctoral thesis presented by Turkish central bank Governor Sahap Kavcioglu is being investigated after allegations of plagiarism, according to an official at Istanbul’s Marmara University.

“The issue is being investigated in line with the Marmara University Publication Ethics Board directive,” Omer Akgiray, the board’s chief, said in an email on Thursday.

Birgun newspaper, a leftwing publication, first reported the allegations against Kavcioglu after making an official request for information through the communications center of Turkey’s presidency. Akgiray told the paper the plagiarism claims were discussed on June 26 and a rapporteur had been appointed to investigate. Birgun’s request, and the official response, were both seen by Bloomberg.

The 2003 thesis titled “Application for the Management, Solution and Monitoring of the Problematic Loans in Commercial Banks” appears to borrow whole sections from a report published by the central bank the year before, without proper footnotes or citations, according to Birgun.

Kavcioglu, who took over at the helm of the central bank in March, didn’t immediately comment when contacted by Bloomberg.

One of his predecessors as governor, Murat Uysal, faced plagiarism allegations in 2019 over a thesis he wrote on inflation-targeting. The central bank declined to comment on the accusations against Uysal at the time.

The theses of both men were overseen by the same adviser, Erisah Arican, who’s currently serving as chairman of Borsa Istanbul and deputy chair of Turkish Wealth Fund. Arican also oversaw the dissertation of Berat Albayrak, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s son-in-law and former treasury and finance minister. Arican’s office at Borsa Istanbul couldn’t be reached when called outside office hours.

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