News & AnalysisEnergy Research

University of Texas Revamps Conflict Rules After Critical Review

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Science  14 Dec 2012:
Vol. 338, Issue 6113, pp. 1407
DOI: 10.1126/science.338.6113.1407

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Critics charged last summer that a University of Texas (UT), Austin, report—which examined the human health and environmental implications of fracking—was tilted in favor of the gas industry. And they revealed that its principal manager—former U.S. Geological Survey chief Charles Groat—had an undisclosed financial stake in a gas exploration company. Now, a group commissioned by the university has released a scathing review of the fracking report. In a surprising turn of events, UT has accepted all of the findings and has already started to overhaul its conflict of interest and research management policies, removed the fracking report from its Web site, and is seeking new leaders for its Energy Institute.