The professor claimed one of her colleagues was trying to sabotage her through a negative email campaign.

Bloomberg News reports:

Columbia Bias Case Ends in $1.3 Million Payout to Professor

A jury awarded $1.25 million to a former Columbia University finance professor whose senior colleague sent dozens of emails disparaging her to industry professionals after she lodged a harassment complaint against him.

The verdict is a fraction of the $16 million Enrichetta Ravina sought as her bias and retaliation lawsuit went to the jury in Manhattan federal court. Still, her lawyer welcomed the award.

“The $1.25 million in damages in this case should send a clear message to Columbia University and the world of higher education that workplace retaliation and abuse of power in academia will not be tolerated,” David Sanford said.

The jury ordered the payment a day after it concluded that Business School professor Geert Bekaert retaliated against Ravina, 42, and held Columbia responsible for his actions. The jury of four men and four women on Friday ordered Columbia and Bekaert to pay a total $750,000 in compensatory damages and ordered Bekaert to pay $500,000 in punitive damages.

Ravina sued for gender discrimination and retaliation, claiming he sexually harassed her and then stalled her research and ruined her chances of gaining tenure because she complained. The jury rejected her claim of discrimination against Bekaert and Columbia.


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