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A professor at a University X is holding a second appointment as a researcher on leave at another University in a different country with his full salary being paid from his funding there. The professor in question is likely being employed and paid as a full-time assistant professor at uni X despite rarely showing up there which may be illegal.

How can I check if a professor who holds a second appointment as a faculty researcher and is being paid full time in both appoinments?

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    I've had short term "on leave" situations where I maintained my relationship and tenure with my home institution, but without pay, while visiting another university that paid me for my services.
    – Buffy
    Mar 1 at 12:38
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    @Nicolaus This is not going to be a productive venue to make your case. You've asked a question, you've gotten answers. If you're not here to learn from the answers others provide and instead want to argue or make a case for doing something different, you've come to the wrong place.
    – Bryan Krause
    Mar 1 at 12:45
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    This is not a discussion forum.
    – Bryan Krause
    Mar 1 at 12:50
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    The answers you received are good and reasonable, I don't understand what kind of bias you are complaining.
    – The Doctor
    Mar 1 at 13:29
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    In what context are you looking to find out? Are you their department chair, or an HR investigator, a journalist trying to uncover a scandal, a labor regulation officer, etc? Are you merely a citizen concerned about possible illegal behavior? Are you just morbidly curious? How would you use this information if you were able to obtain it? All of these would affect the answer. Mar 1 at 17:12

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The only reasonable way to know this information is to ask him, though it seems unlikely he will answer. You could also obtain this information through unreasonable or unethical means such as gossip, espionage, or theft but these are not advisable. Be aware you may be violating the privacy of this individual.

You suggest that this activity may be illegal. Legality will depend on employment law in your jurisdiction. I am not sure from your question if you have admissible evidence to make this claim. If you believe illegal activity has been committed, you may report it to HR, institutions which handle employment oversight, or even the police. They may not be able to pursue it without first being provided evidence. HR may be the best bet in the case that you do not have evidence, since they might be motivated to obtain evidence. It may be advisable to make any report anonymously as a whistleblower in order to minimize your exposure.

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    Basically, it boils down to whether OP has a vested interest in the matter, whether as responsible officer or as bystander interested in the integrity of the process. However, the "behind-the-scenes" information makes the OP look like they are looking for material to create damage to the target person as punishment for other wrongdoings. Anything but initiating investigation and possible punishment for the specific misdeed in question is vigilantism and morally very problematic. Cross-punishment in civilized societies is not permitted for very good reasons. Mar 1 at 20:57
  • @CaptainEmacs Do you suggest I edit my answer to include some of these points? Or maybe an edit to the question? I am not sure whether vested interest is relevant or not; as per the question, they have some interest. Of course, we can read between the lines here and make assumptions about OP's position and motivation (as you have, and as I have done in my comment on the question). Mar 2 at 9:03
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Why does it matter to you? The details of employment are between the employer and employee. If both sides (or in this case all three sides) are happy with the arrangement, it is nobody else's business figuring out who pays whom and how much. If one of the two universities are unhappy with the situation, it is their job (not yours) to make inquiries.

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  • A German professor was caught having two paid professoral jobs in Germany (which is not permitted). This was because he had two websites. I do not think it is inappropriate to investigate that for - say - a student, and to inquire about that. Mar 1 at 20:59
  • @CaptainEmacs Then tell the authorities about it. I'm just not a fan of vigilante investigators. (Besides, of course, the practical difficulty that Joe Shmoe will not get very far with getting access to documents that prove/disprove that something illegal is happening.) Mar 2 at 16:20
  • I do not disagree with your stance on vigilantism, but I think the problem is not the reporting per se, but the motivation behind it (see my response). I think the prof can not complain if someone notices something off, asks around and it comes back to bite them. However, if that's as a consequence of a directed cabal seeking to dig out dirt, it's quite a different issue. In my opinion, that's the actual problem in the present case. Mar 2 at 17:32
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    @CaptainEmacs Yes, of course, someone doing something wrong cannot expect not being called out on it. But I just don't see how OP would have any evidence that that person is actually paid twice. They state that that is so, but I fail to see how they would have a reasonable belief that. It just sounds like they're holding a grudge. Mar 2 at 18:44
  • They hold a grudge, that's for sure. I am also not a fan of prying into other people's business, but that's what whistleblowing is about, in the end. Only, here, it's with a problematic motivation and thus not true whistleblowing. Mar 2 at 19:55
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You don't get to check anything. The arrangements made between that professor and these universities are none of your business.

If you are really really worried, you could give what you know to the HR department of your university. However, assuming they are professional, they will not tell you anything. They may or may not already know what you know. They may or may not have an arrangement in place. They may or may not take action against it. But they will tell you nothing, because it is between them and the professor.

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    If you feel that way you can tell the HR department of your university. They are the ones that can take action. Just don't expect them to tell you what happens next. Mar 1 at 12:33
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    That is not how universities work; not that there aren't any problems, but the problems are not what you describe. Even small universities are big bureaucracies, and the careers of people working in HR do not depend on professors: the academic hierarchy is completely separate from the staff hierarchy. Mar 1 at 12:54
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    Your question was about a person being employed by two universities. HR is the obvious department to check that. So I don't get your point. Mar 1 at 13:10
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    @Nicolaus See my comment above. If the person in question did plagiarize or other academic misdeeds, these should be reported as such to the relevant entities. If the person has a fraudulent employment status, that may not be your business, but it's also your right as upright citizen to report that. But what I found very questionable is that you seem to intend to cross-retaliate against the alleged academic misdeeds of the prof using a completely unrelated employment matter. That would be ethically very questionable and you would be playing private avenger. Mar 1 at 21:04
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    @CaptainEmacs This is a really important point - maybe you can consider adding an answer? Or I can edit my answer, now selected "best" answer (although definitely not "best" IMO). Mar 2 at 9:08
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Basically, it boils down to whether OP has a vested interest in the matter.

This can be as responsible officer or as bystander interested in the integrity of the process.

However, the "behind-the-scenes" information that OP gives makes them look like they are looking for material to create damage to the target person as punishment for other wrongdoings. Anything but initiating investigation and possible punishment for the specific misdeed in question is vigilantism and morally very problematic.

Cross-punishment in civilized societies is not permitted for very good reasons.

Concretely, if the person in question did plagiarize or other academic misdeeds, these should be reported as such to the relevant entities. If the person has a fraudulent employment status, that may not be OP's business, but it's also OP's right as upright citizen to report that.

But what I found very questionable is that OP seems to intend to cross-retaliate against the alleged academic misdeeds of the prof using a completely unrelated employment matter. That would be ethically very questionable and you would be playing private avenger.

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