“If a conference such as SEFI 2015 cannot address the ethical lapses of the engineering peer review process, what venues are available to demand that engineers adhere to the ideals embodied in their various codes of ethics?” — Wayne Coste and Michael Smith
WERE AUTHORS’ STATEMENTS LIBELOUS? OR WAS CASE STUDY TOO CLOSE TO TRUTH FOR COMFORT?
By AE911Truth Staff
July 30, 2015
Last month, the European Society for Engineering Education (SEFI) rescinded its approval for engineers Wayne Coste and Michael Smith to present their paper at the organization’s 43rd annual conference in Orléans, France, just prior to participants’ arrival at the conference.
The paper, titled “The World Trade Center Analyses: Case Study of Ethics, Public Policy and the Engineering Profession” and co-authored by R. M. Korol of McMaster University, questions the ethics and credibility of those who speak for the engineering profession. Specifically, it critiques the unscientific conclusions and ethics failures of an article written by Northwestern University engineering professor Zdeněk P. Bažant, “What Did and Did Not Cause the Collapse of WTC Twin Towers in New York,” that was published in respected professional journals after the destruction of these New York City skyscrapers on September 11, 2001.
Though their paper was peer-reviewed by the SEFI conference’s scientific committee and was subsequently accepted and scheduled for presentation, the scientific committee then did an about-face after two committee chairmen overruled the scientific committee’s recommendation and withdrew approval at the last minute. The reason SEFI gave for pulling the paper had nothing to do with the technical veracity of its content or its conclusions, the paper’s authors maintain. Rather, they say, SEFI cited an unspecified concern about possible libelous statements.