BMJ editor resigns after university accepts tobacco money

May 17, 2001

News: Editor resigns from post after tobacco gift

Dr Richard Smith, editor of the BMJ, has resigned from his position as professor of medical journalism at the University of Nottingham, following its acceptance of £3.8m from British American Tobacco (BAT) to fund an international centre for the study of corporate social responsibility.

The decision was made by readers, who were asked to vote on bmj.com whether the university should return the money and whether Dr Smith should resign as professor of medical journalism if it didn't.

Of 1075 people who voted online during 4-10 May, 84% were in favour of the university returning the money and 54% felt that Dr Smith should resign if it refused.

In a letter to Sir Colin Campbell, the university's vice chancellor, Dr Smith describes the university's acceptance of the money as "a serious mistake and has damaged the university." He explains that the reason the vote on whether he should resign was much closer than the vote on returning the money was "because people were divided over whether I should dissociate myself from the University or stay in position and argue my case."

"I am resigning both because I said that I would do what the BMJ's readers said I should do and because I've argued so strongly that the University shouldn't have taken this money," he writes.

A full copy of the letter will be available on bmj.com at 00:01 hours, Friday 18 May 2001 (UK time).
-end-
Contact:

Richard Smith, Editor, BMJ, BMA House, London, UK Email: ewilkinson@bmj.com

BMJ

Related Money Articles from Brightsurf:

The secretive networks used to move money offshore
The researchers at USC have made some discoveries about the network behind the Panama Papers, uncovering uniquely fragmented network behavior and transactions.

Leaving money on the table to stay in the game
Unlike businesses or governments, organisms can't go into evolutionary debt -- there is no borrowing one's way back from extinction.

Money can't buy love -- or friendship
While researchers have suggested that individuals who base their self-worth on their financial success often feel lonely in everyday life, a newly published study by the University at Buffalo and Harvard Business School has taken initial steps to better understand why this link exists.

More taxpayers' money for the environment and public benefit
Over 3,600 scientists from across Europe call for effective action from the EU regarding its Common Agricultural Policy.

When money is scarce, biased behavior happens faster
Discrimination may happen faster than the blink of an eye, especially during periods of economic scarcity, according to a new study from Cornell University.

More money, more gabapentin
Pharmaceutical companies' payments to doctors may be influencing them to prescribe more expensive, brand-name versions of the pain drug gabapentin, a team of researchers report in the July 8, 2019 issue of JAMA Internal Medicine, and the increasing use of the drug suggests it may be being abused. 

Why money cannot 'buy' housework
If a man is handy with the vacuum cleaner, isn't averse to rustling up a lush family meal most nights after he's put on the washing machine having popped into the supermarket on his way home then it's more than likely his partner will have her own bank account.

How information is like snacks, money, and drugs -- to your brain
A new study by researchers at UC Berkeley's Haas School of Business has found that information acts on the brain's dopamine-producing reward system in the same way as money or food.

Ultra-secure form of virtual money proposed
A new type of money that allows users to make decisions based on information arriving at different locations and times, and that could also protect against attacks from quantum computers, has been proposed by a researcher at the University of Cambridge.

Time is money, especially when it comes to giving
Would you be more likely to donate to charity if you could report the gift sooner on your taxes?

Read More: Money News and Money Current Events
Brightsurf.com is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.