Thum Ping Tjin is research associate with anthropology school: Oxford

Historian Thum Ping Tjin is a research associate with Oxford University's School of Anthropology and Museum Ethnography, said a university spokesman yesterday.

Responding to queries from The Straits Times, Oxford University's head of communications Stephen Rouse said Dr Thum was awarded a doctorate in history by Oxford in 2011. He added that Dr Thum is a Visiting Fellow of the Fertility and Reproduction Studies Group within the school, and therefore an affiliate of the school.

Mr Rouse also said there are three categories of research associates with the school - anthropologists based in Oxford, recent doctorate graduates of the department, or social scientists based outside the university working with members of the department.

Dr Thum falls into the third category, he said, adding that research associates are not employees of the school or university. "But they are valued colleagues with whom we have shared research interests."

Oxford's response came after the Parliament Secretariat yesterday wrote to Dr Thum asking him to "clarify his academic credentials".

In a press statement yesterday, the Office of the Clerk of Parliament said Dr Thum's written representation to the Select Committee on deliberate online falsehoods had stated that he was a research fellow in history at Oxford. It noted that there have been varying accounts, citing how Dr Thum informed the committee during the hearing that he held a "visiting professorship in anthropology", among other things.

Clarifications have thus been sought to ensure that the committee's report correctly reflects Dr Thum's positions, it said.

Yuen Sin

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on April 14, 2018, with the headline 'Thum Ping Tjin is research associate with anthropology school: Oxford'. Print Edition | Subscribe