torsdag 24 juli 2014

Response from ECCOMAS General Assembly

Here is the response to my letter to the General Assembly of ECCOMAS recorded in the previous post:

Dear Professor Johnson, 
your email of July 21, 2014, was discussed in the ECCOMAS General Assembly meeting on July 22, 2014. The members of the General Assembly unanimously arrived at the following conclusions:
  1. The selection procedure followed the official dedication of the ECCOMAS Ludwig Prandtl Medal, acknowledging your outstanding and sustained contributions in the area of computational fluid dynamics.
  2. It was confirmed that the award ceremony had to follow the established procedure consisting of a short introduction of the awardees and a brief summary of their major scientific achievements, not providing the possibility for addresses by the awardees. The award ceremony on Monday, July 21, 2014, executed by the organizers of the joint WCCM-ECCM-ECFD conference, exactly followed these rules.
  3. The ECCOMAS General Assembly regrets your decision not to accept the award of the Ludwig Prandtl Medal. However, it respects your decision.
  4. The ECCOMAS General Assembly considers the discussion on this matter as finished.
Best regards,
Ekkehard Ramm, Ferdinando Auricchio, Pedro Diez, and Josef Eberhardsteiner
President, Vicepresidents, and Secretary of ECCOMAS

Here is my comment on this conclusion of the General Assembly "unanimously arrived at":

My condition for accepting the Medal was that a very short statement authored by me was voiced at the award ceremony, by me or the chairman or the person presenting my work. What I wanted to express was that I through my work have found that Prandtl's boundary layer theory is not in accordance with observations. In short, that my work was not in agreement with Prandtl's.  

This could not be accepted by the Organizers, who demanded me to either give up my condition  of voicing my statement or not accept the Medal. 

When presenting my decision to not accept the Medal at the award ceremony, the Organizers stated according to reports that the reason I could not accept the Medal was that the findings of my research was in opposition to Prandtl's boundary layer theory.

This was not the true reason, which was that my voice was suppressed. I had said that I can accept the Medal if my view on Prandtl's boundary layer theory is not suppressed.

In any case, the Organizers de facto made the very statement at the award ceremony, which could not be made, namely that my view is in opposition to Prandtl's. Nothing was thus gained by forcing me to  not accept the Medal.

And No, the discussion on "this matter" is not all "finished". We are only at the beginning of a long discussion to come in the world of CFD, then outside the body of ECCOMAS, where the focus can continue to be to  "exactly follow established procedures" for  "acknowledging outstanding and sustained contributions in the area of CFD". 

There must be members of ECCOMAS, and others, who do not applaud the handling of the 2014 Prandtl Medal. To suppress expression of scientific theory and observation is to violate the most basic principle of science of free expression. It is nothing for ECCOMAS to be proud of.

If the General Assembly respects my decision to not accept the Medal, I do not respect the decision by the Organizers to force me to do so.

PS By "outstanding contributions to CFD" is apparently meant my work in the 1980s and 1990s,  "sustained constributions" must then refer to my work in the 2000s and 2010s, which is exactly the work in opposition to Prandtl which could not be mentioned at the award ceremony: In mathematics, one contradiction can give rise to any number of contradictions. 

2 kommentarer:

  1. I must say that I can not see that the organization has forced you into anything. They on the contrary expresses a wish for you to have accepted the award. Of course, under the procedure that is applicable for this award. You demanded some changes from this protocol, so you have then forced yourself.

    It is a strange claim that they suppresses an open scientific debate. They wanted to award you based on their (that is according to their protocol) interpretation of your work. They should of course have the final saying in why they wanted to reward you, do you disagree?