Lukacs loses court battle

University of Manitoba math professor Gabor Lukacs has lost his battle against
the university in a case that put the U of M under international spotlight.

In a written statement released Thursday, Court of Queen’s Bench Justice
Deborah McCawley ruled that Lukacs did not have standing to request a
judicial review of the decision to award a PhD to a student who did not pass a
comprehensive candidacy exam.

The statement explains that Lukacs has failed to produce a public and private
interest standing, on the grounds that Lukacs had no connection to the student
and that the dispute was between himself and the university, two private
entities, “which is not analogous to a governmental authority.”

“Neither has he demonstrated any damages other than unsubstantiated
statements as to what he thinks will occur if he does not succeed in his mission,”
McCawley wrote. “His interest, as he himself acknowledge, is one of conscience
which, as counsel respondents observed, does not itself necessarily ground a
legal proceeding.”

In an email to local media, Lukacs said that the decision was a profound
disappointment. “It saddens me that something so important as the present
case was decided based on a narrow technicality (‘standing’) instead of on
its merits,” he wrote.

Lukacs wrote that he was also concerned that Justice McCawley found
the university to be a “private entity,” considering the U of M receives public