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Taiwan professor demands president publish her LSE Ph.D. dissertation

Putting the text online should only take half a day: Peng

President Tsai Ing-wen speaking at a Chunghwa Post event Thursday September 5.

President Tsai Ing-wen speaking at a Chunghwa Post event Thursday September 5. (CNA photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) – President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) should publish her Ph.D. dissertation from the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE) to convince all doubters, a professor said Thursday (September 5), the day after the president sued two academics who questioned the validity of her diploma.

For months, National Taiwan University (NTU) professor emeritus Ho De-fen (賀德芬) and University of North Carolina at Charlotte assistant professor Hwan C. Lin (林環牆) have claimed the president never passed her dissertation defense in 1984, though both Tsai and the LSE rejected the allegations.

The simplest way to discredit the doubters would be for Tsai to bring her dissertation out into the open, said Thomas Peng (彭錦鵬), an associate professor at NTU’s Department of Political Science.

He wondered how difficult it was in the age of the Internet to publish a dissertation for all to see, the United Daily News reported. Peng said it would only take one morning to put the document online, while the only reasons for not doing so would be that the text included plagiarized passages, or was too poor in quality, or that she had failed the oral tests.

If you asked somebody whether they had a Ph.D. dissertation, and they printed the document right there on the spot to show you, you would no longer doubt the fact, the United Daily News quoted Peng as saying.