careers https://www.scienceblogs.com/ en University Degrees that Lead to Jobs in Sweden https://www.scienceblogs.com/aardvarchaeology/2015/01/17/university-degrees-that-lead-to-jobs-in-sweden <span>University Degrees that Lead to Jobs in Sweden</span> <div class="field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Five years ago <a href="http://scienceblogs.com/aardvarchaeology/2010/03/10/university-degrees-that-lead-t/">I blogged</a> about a study by the Swedish National Agency for Higher Education, identifying the higher education degrees that were likely to give you the best chances of a Swedish job in the period 2010-2020. This was because I complain a lot here on the blog about how useless a degree in anything even remotely similar to archaeology is, and I wanted to say something positive for a change. The careers that looked promising in 2010 were in lower-paying positions in healthcare, education and tech.</p> <p>Now the Swedish Public Employment Service has published <a href="http://www.arbetsformedlingen.se/download/18.4dc389314a103f6fdb49a7/1421305839300/Var_finns_jobben_-_Bed%C3%B6mning_f%C3%B6r_2015_och_en_l%C3%A5ngsiktig_utblick1.pdf" target="_blank">a similar study</a> of what degrees they believe will offer the most opportunities in the period 2020-2025. Here's the new list, with an asterisk for degrees that were on the previous one as well.</p> <ul><li>Day care teacher, Sw. <em>förskollärare</em> *</li> <li>Youth centre leader, Sw. <em>fritidspedagog</em> *</li> <li>Teacher, children aged 7-16, Sw. <em>grundskolelärare</em></li> <li>High-school teacher of trades such as carpentry and plumbing, Sw. <em>gymnasielärare i yrkesämnen</em> *</li> <li>Teacher for children with special needs, Sw. <em>speciallärare</em> *</li> <li>Doctor, Sw. <em>läkare</em></li> <li>Nurse, Sw. <em>sjuksköterska</em></li> <li>Dentist, Sw. <em>tandläkare</em> *</li> </ul><p>(They also list “IT jobs” and “tech jobs”, but don't identify specific degrees.)</p> <p>The future of the Swedish job market still seems to be in healthcare, education and tech. An encouraging thing though is that while the only job on the 2010 list that was likely to make you any reasonable money was the dentist, now the doctor is also on the list. In other words: if you are bright and enjoy working with people, if you're thinking of starting a degree this year, and if you want to earn a comfortable living in Sweden after graduation, then apply for med school or dentistry school now.</p> </div> <span><a title="View user profile." href="/author/aardvarchaeology" lang="" about="/author/aardvarchaeology" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">aardvarchaeology</a></span> <span>Sat, 01/17/2015 - 08:20</span> <div class="field field--name-field-blog-tags field--type-entity-reference field--label-inline"> <div class="field--label">Tags</div> <div class="field--items"> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/noibn" hreflang="en">NOIBN</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/careers" hreflang="en">careers</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/higher-education" hreflang="en">higher education</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/jobs" hreflang="en">Jobs</a></div> </div> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-blog-categories field--type-entity-reference field--label-inline"> <div class="field--label">Categories</div> <div class="field--items"> <div class="field--item"><a href="/channel/education" hreflang="en">Education</a></div> </div> </div> <section> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1811862" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1421504753"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Has there been any retrospective study on how accurate these projections have been in the past? I always read them with a fair bit of skepticism (which may be misplaced for all I know).</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1811862&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="5q8LugsYrqpt6Cg30jl_vW5Y82RGXDMkb4JA253A0Uk"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Mikael (not verified)</span> on 17 Jan 2015 <a href="https://www.scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/11622/feed#comment-1811862">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1811863" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1421513208"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>It is a really sad story with IT in Sweden. More people are leaving the sector due to retirement than new talent coming in. The degree limit for studying iT at the University has gone down and it was really hard to get a seat on that education 20-30 years ago. Around 50 percent of the ones starting to study IT at the University drops out after 1-2 years. It is sad because there are quite a lot of jobs.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1811863&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="tNo-EJFfBVSZ3pE9tGlwZ5kAIu47Jckkr4vboVhOfBs"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Thomas Ivarsson (not verified)</span> on 17 Jan 2015 <a href="https://www.scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/11622/feed#comment-1811863">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1811864" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1421513342"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>And I forgot to say that salaries are good in this sector as long as you have talent.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1811864&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="C0pM_E-iLqWl6LrLHXquMLoB9eRIHVFAqTZ3hbeFpWY"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Thomas Ivarsson (not verified)</span> on 17 Jan 2015 <a href="https://www.scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/11622/feed#comment-1811864">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> </section> <ul class="links inline list-inline"><li class="comment-forbidden"><a href="/user/login?destination=/aardvarchaeology/2015/01/17/university-degrees-that-lead-to-jobs-in-sweden%23comment-form">Log in</a> to post comments</li></ul> Sat, 17 Jan 2015 13:20:27 +0000 aardvarchaeology 56089 at https://www.scienceblogs.com Economic Astronomy: Gender Gaps in Lifetime Earnings https://www.scienceblogs.com/principles/2011/08/10/economic-astronomy-gender-gaps <span>Economic Astronomy: Gender Gaps in Lifetime Earnings</span> <div class="field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field--item"><p>There are two recent studies of gender disparities in science and technology (referred to by the faintly awful acronym "STEM") getting a lot of play over the last few days. As is often the case with social-science results, the data they have aren't quite the data you would really like to have, and I think it's worth poking at them a little, not to deny the validity of the results, but to point out the inherent limitations of the process.</p> <p>The first is a <a href="http://cew.georgetown.edu/collegepayoff/">study of lifetime earnings in various fields</a> that includes this graph showing that women with a Ph.D. earn about the same amount as men with a BA:</p> <p><img src="http://scienceblogs.com/principles/wp-content/blogs.dir/467/files/2012/04/i-0c230c85999f45d40200d9badf8b18f6-lifetime_earnings.png" alt="i-0c230c85999f45d40200d9badf8b18f6-lifetime_earnings.png" /></p> <p>That's pretty damning. But also a little deceptive, because this is a plot of "lifetime earnings," which means that they are necessarily doing a social-science analogue of astronomy to make this graph.</p> <!--more--><p>What I mean by that is that this is necessarily a retrospective study, looking back at how things <em>were</em>, in the same way that astronomers are looking at distant galaxies as they were back when the light was emitted, millions of years ago. The authors of the current study are following the procedure used by the Census Bureau for similar work, which they describe thusly:</p> <blockquote><p>Specifically, the Census approach looks at 5-year age groups -- 25-29, 30-34, etc. -- to get an average for each age group and then sums each of these 5-year averages of a particular demographic and/or educational group to estimate the average 40-year degree for that group.</p> </blockquote> <p>What that means is that they're taking a cross-section back through time. In order to get the average salary for people at age 40, they are looking at the average salary of people who are 40 <em>now</em> (well, who were 40 in 2007-2009, but you get the idea). That means that you're looking at the salary of a 40-year-old Ph.D. who was hired somewhere in the 1995-2000 range, which is not necessarily the salary someone hired today should expect to be making when they are 40.</p> <p>This is important for these kind of gap studies, because the data presented necessarily average over many years of changing conditions. To get the last few years of their hypothetical 40-year working life, they're looking at the salaries of Ph.D.'s who were hired in 1970(-ish). And I hope everybody will agree that the working environment was significantly different in 1970 than it is today, particularly when it comes to differential treatment of gender and race.</p> <p>This makes interpreting this graph a little trickier than is being presented by most of the links to it I've seen. That is, even in the hypothetical fantasy-world case where gender disparities in salary and promotion have magically been fixed <em>today</em>, you would still expect to see a significant gap in this sort of lifetime earnings calculation due to the gender disparities that existed <em>in the past</em>.</p> <p>If you want to really figure out what's going on with the earnings of different groups from this kind of study, you would need two such studies, preferably separated by a substantial interval in time. And, in fact, we have just that, in the 2002 Census Bureau report referenced in the current study (<a href="http://www.census.gov/prod/2002pubs/p23-210.pdf">PDF</a>), which includes this graph:</p> <p><img src="http://scienceblogs.com/principles/wp-content/blogs.dir/467/files/2012/04/i-b4c17ffb8a7798cab5db91f906cb85b5-lifetime_earnings_2002.png" alt="i-b4c17ffb8a7798cab5db91f906cb85b5-lifetime_earnings_2002.png" /></p> <p>Aside from trivial differences in formatting, this is the same figure as above. The absolute numbers are different, but what really matters for this discussion is the size of the gaps, which you can measure in percentage terms. Defining the percentage difference as the difference between the two salaries (M-F) divided by the smaller of the two (i.e., the women's salary), we have the following: </p><p><img src="http://scienceblogs.com/principles/wp-content/blogs.dir/467/files/2012/04/i-d2103671c74ab84c4fb5949cde12bed1-lifetime_earnings_table.png" alt="i-d2103671c74ab84c4fb5949cde12bed1-lifetime_earnings_table.png" /></p> <p>In other words, in the 2002 report (based on data from the late '90s), a man with a Ph.D. earned 52% more than a woman with a Ph.D., while in the 2011 report (based on data from the late '00's) the gap in lifetime earnings was 21%. Which is a very different sort of picture, suggesting that the job climate has improved substantially over the last decade (or, more likely, over the decade between 1960 and 1970).</p> <p>(Interestingly, the current study's gap for Ph.D.'s is smaller than any other category, and dramatically so. The same pattern holds for the older report, though the difference is probably not significant. I'm not sure what this means, but it's interesting.)</p> <p>Does this mean that everything's rosy? No, not at all. There is one thing that remains the same in the two reports, namely that a woman with a Ph.D. earned about the same amount as a man with a B.A. (slightly more in the newer data, but the difference is about a third of the gap). Which means there's still work to do, but the outlook for a new Ph.D. going forward is not nearly as dire as the top graph alone seems to suggest.</p> <p>(One other note, not as directly relevant to this: the current study assumes an "ideal" trajectory with no gaps in employment. As one of the usual explanations of gender gaps in lifetime earnings is that women tend to be more likely to take time off for family reasons, this is obviously not perfectly realistic. However, as they note in their discussion, the method they have used would, if anything, tend to understate the difference for those women who do take time off. So, while a more detailed investigation would be nice (if kind of impractical), that's not a killer flaw in their results. It is something to be aware of, though.)</p> </div> <span><a title="View user profile." href="/author/drorzel" lang="" about="/author/drorzel" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">drorzel</a></span> <span>Wed, 08/10/2011 - 03:38</span> <div class="field field--name-field-blog-tags field--type-entity-reference field--label-inline"> <div class="field--label">Tags</div> <div class="field--items"> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/academia" hreflang="en">Academia</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/jobs" hreflang="en">Jobs</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/playing-graphs" hreflang="en">Playing-With-Graphs</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/science" hreflang="en">Science</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/society" hreflang="en">society</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/careers" hreflang="en">careers</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/economics-0" hreflang="en">economics</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/education" hreflang="en">education</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/gender" hreflang="en">gender</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/income" hreflang="en">Income</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/salary" hreflang="en">salary</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/social-science-0" hreflang="en">social science</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/statistics" hreflang="en">statistics</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/academia" hreflang="en">Academia</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/jobs" hreflang="en">Jobs</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/science" hreflang="en">Science</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/society" hreflang="en">society</a></div> </div> </div> <section> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1642543" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1312962573"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Surely that first graph is off by a factor of 10. I can't imagine someone with less than High School to make 1.1 million dollars a year. Also the numbers on the x-axis are awkward.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1642543&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="8T9wlN_qBbOFqBY4pf1MJEY-CHq09rE8bW73mJ0ljWw"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Mausy5043 (not verified)</span> on 10 Aug 2011 <a href="https://www.scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/11622/feed#comment-1642543">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1642544" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1312962807"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>That's a graph of <i>lifetime</i>earnings, not annual salary. Which is another persistent source of confusion. It's not saying that a high school dropout makes 1.1 million on average, it's saying that they make 1.1 million <i>total</i> over their 40-year working life.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1642544&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="tmDYA4y7n-l3khvGaZ3P9m-1kQO_dnQ14F6iKw71ggw"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a rel="nofollow" href="http://scienceblogs.com/principles/" lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Chad Orzel (not verified)</a> on 10 Aug 2011 <a href="https://www.scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/11622/feed#comment-1642544">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1642545" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1312993531"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>I don't see how they can get from census data that only record the amount earned in a particular time in the distant past to a revision that (1) determines how long women were out of the workforce on their own volition and, more importantly, (2) how much their salaries were reduced in later years by the lack of pay raises and promotion during the time they took off. </p> <p>In any case, the salaries by level of degree hide the gender differences in the types of degrees earned. How many of the masters degrees held by women in, say 1980, were in education because they were teaching K-12? Is the lifetime income of a BA in English the same as for a BS in Engineering? </p> <p>One area that might make for an interesting study would be medicine, because we are rapidly approaching the point where half of all new MDs are female, and this is quite a change from 20 or 30 years ago. Of course, even there you will find variations by specialty.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1642545&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="apCW40UIVGrKPaMylAIV4hPEF1z1DXf4d5bz7AvP1O4"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a rel="nofollow" href="http://doctorpion.blogspot.com/" lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">CCPhysicist (not verified)</a> on 10 Aug 2011 <a href="https://www.scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/11622/feed#comment-1642545">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1642546" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1312994499"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p><i>I don't see how they can get from census data that only record the amount earned in a particular time in the distant past to a revision that (1) determines how long women were out of the workforce on their own volition and, more importantly, (2) how much their salaries were reduced in later years by the lack of pay raises and promotion during the time they took off.</i></p> <p>I <i>think</i> what they're doing is much simpler than that. They're taking the current average salary of 30-35 year old women with Ph.D.'s and using it for the 0-5 year salary, then the current average salary of 35-40 year old women with Ph.D.'s and using it for the 5-10 year salary, then the current average salary for 40-45 year old women with Ph.D.'s and using it for the 10-15 year salary, and so on. Which is why I say it's averaging over the distant past-- the average salaries for the older cohorts reflects lower starting salaries and slower promotion and so on.</p> <p>At least, that's how I interpret the paragraph or two explaining the method. I can't see what else they would be able to do with the data they collected.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1642546&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="AA4oP0yGCPXfrY4v8R0TnhEaZLDjj_JyWlMNk0Jx8C4"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a rel="nofollow" href="http://scienceblogs.com/principles/" lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Chad Orzel (not verified)</a> on 10 Aug 2011 <a href="https://www.scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/11622/feed#comment-1642546">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1642547" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1313013201"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>What you say @4 is also what I think they are actually doing, which means they are not accounting for ANY of the major variables that might have been more significant in 1985 than today when trying to project income for people newly entering those careers.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1642547&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="dNG9ofswq2pDl8fi_VIeaNv23-pORfLh4_KJmyg5cfM"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">CCPhysicist (not verified)</span> on 10 Aug 2011 <a href="https://www.scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/11622/feed#comment-1642547">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1642548" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1313023067"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p><i>"Which means there's still work to do, but the outlook for a new Ph.D. going forward is not nearly as dire as the top graph alone seems to suggest."</i><br /> Not <i>necessarily</i> nearly as dire, you mean.</p> <p>Unlike galaxies, which to the best of my knowledge do not display such fickleness, it is in fact possible for wages for women to decrease relative to mens again. No data I've seen address what will happen to Ph.D.s going forward.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1642548&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="LecwQs_0XO55aOhiGdcFxqmmaiUVu8tIuN35e6Gwz0I"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">becca (not verified)</span> on 10 Aug 2011 <a href="https://www.scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/11622/feed#comment-1642548">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1642549" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1328457356"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>what??????</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1642549&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="V05AWSt7qFskggyELsP_U2i5Z3v6cRUW51vyB86odFA"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">kim (not verified)</span> on 05 Feb 2012 <a href="https://www.scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/11622/feed#comment-1642549">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> </section> <ul class="links inline list-inline"><li class="comment-forbidden"><a href="/user/login?destination=/principles/2011/08/10/economic-astronomy-gender-gaps%23comment-form">Log in</a> to post comments</li></ul> Wed, 10 Aug 2011 07:38:01 +0000 drorzel 47650 at https://www.scienceblogs.com Return of the Project for Non-Academic Science https://www.scienceblogs.com/principles/2011/05/19/return-of-the-project-for-non <span>Return of the Project for Non-Academic Science</span> <div class="field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field--item"><p>In keeping with this week's unofficial theme of wibbling about academia, there's an <a href="http://www.thenation.com/article/160410/faulty-towers-crisis-higher-education">article at <cite>The Nation</cite> about the evils of graduate school</a> that's prompted some discussion. <a href="http://blogs.discovermagazine.com/cosmicvariance/2011/05/17/toward-more-comfortable-bottlenecks/">Sean says more or less what I would</a>, though maybe a little more nicely than I would.</p> <p>I wouldn't bother to comment further, except this spurred Sean to <a href="http://blogs.discovermagazine.com/cosmicvariance/2011/05/18/soliciting-advice-non-academic-careers-for-ph-d-s/">solicit career advice for scientists looking to leave the academic track</a>. Which reminded me that a couple of years ago, I did a bloggy <a href="http://scienceblogs.com/principles/jobs/pnas/">Project for Non-Academic Science</a> (name chosen to have the same acronym as a prestigious journal, because it amused me to do so), where I solicited personal stories of careers outside the normal academic track, and posted them here.</p> <p>Since it's been a couple of years, and that was fun the first time around, let's bring that back around. So, consider this an open request for information:</p> <blockquote><p><strong>If you have a degree in science, and a career outside of academia that makes use of your science background, and would be willing to share your story with blog readers, send me email at the address in the "Contact" tab at the top of this page.</strong></p> </blockquote> <p>The process is very simple: you email me, I'll send you a short list of questions, you send me your answers, and I'll post them here with minimal editing. The resulting profiles can serve as a sort of informal career guide for science majors wondering what to do with their lives.</p> <p>A few definitions and disclaimers:</p> <!--more--><p>1) By "science degree," I mean any degree from a BA on up through a Ph.D., with a major field that would generally be recognized as a science. The goal is to be inclusive, here.</p> <p>2) By "makes use of your science background," I have in mind something where the actual science content of your degree comes into play, not subsidiary skills like experience with computers or the ever-popular "critical thinking." Again, this is pretty flexible.</p> <p>3) "Non-Academic" here means "Not a college or university professor or equivalent." Jobs at academic institutions that are not part of the "Traditional" career track for scientists (student, grad student, post-doc, professor) are fine. Again, this is pretty flexible.</p> <p>4) I'll try to do as little editing as possible on these-- basically, just adding the necessary HTML to make them look nice on the blog. I'm happy to share pictures and links as well, within reason, if you send them to me. If I think something is really inappropriate, I may ask you to revise it, or edit it out myself.</p> <p>5) If you prefer to remain pseudonymous or anonymous, we can probably accomodate that. If you prefer not to name your specific employer, but want to talk about your general field, that's fine, too.</p> <p>I think that's all the quasi-official stuff. So, if you've got a science background and an interesting job, let me know.</p> </div> <span><a title="View user profile." href="/author/drorzel" lang="" about="/author/drorzel" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">drorzel</a></span> <span>Thu, 05/19/2011 - 06:23</span> <div class="field field--name-field-blog-tags field--type-entity-reference field--label-inline"> <div class="field--label">Tags</div> <div class="field--items"> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/academia" hreflang="en">Academia</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/education" hreflang="en">education</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/jobs" hreflang="en">Jobs</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/non-academic" hreflang="en">Non-Academic</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/pnas-0" hreflang="en">PNAS</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/science" hreflang="en">Science</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/advice" hreflang="en">advice</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/careers" hreflang="en">careers</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/interviews" hreflang="en">Interviews</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/profiles" hreflang="en">Profiles</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/academia" hreflang="en">Academia</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/education" hreflang="en">education</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/jobs" hreflang="en">Jobs</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/science" hreflang="en">Science</a></div> </div> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-blog-categories field--type-entity-reference field--label-inline"> <div class="field--label">Categories</div> <div class="field--items"> <div class="field--item"><a href="/channel/education" hreflang="en">Education</a></div> </div> </div> <section> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1641375" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1305802261"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Does stay-at-home-dad count as a non-academic use of my MS in EE? My 8-year-olds and 5-year-old have a fairly solid layman's grasp of newtonian motion, relativity, and cosmology. But the quantum stuff just baffles them. (Though I guess Feynman might have said in that case they're getting it.)</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1641375&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="xwL6vtsqjhLQMtmJF-JHuNQlmOn-bcv0AWbm77Zu4fI"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Dhnice (not verified)</span> on 19 May 2011 <a href="https://www.scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/11622/feed#comment-1641375">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1641376" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1305805967"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>I used to be an environmental consultant with my B.Sc. Biology.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1641376&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="hBFV5Wz6wo3U674rtoG8U-Y0BaPv0pwgEYHpGTXaw9Y"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">jaxkayaker (not verified)</span> on 19 May 2011 <a href="https://www.scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/11622/feed#comment-1641376">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1641377" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1305981448"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Question:<br /> Chad, what fraction of your PhD class is now a tenured professor? </p> <p>Observation 1:<br /> I would count untenured research professors, especially those on soft-money, as NOT the equivalent of faculty. </p> <p>Observation 2:<br /> The article in The Nation was written by a former Yale English professor who is in his late 40s, not a scientist.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1641377&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="Ipxm_xlNDkweqj1zdJ8p4k666kzoq4GpyRucKywsgi8"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">CCPhysicist (not verified)</span> on 21 May 2011 <a href="https://www.scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/11622/feed#comment-1641377">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> </section> <ul class="links inline list-inline"><li class="comment-forbidden"><a href="/user/login?destination=/principles/2011/05/19/return-of-the-project-for-non%23comment-form">Log in</a> to post comments</li></ul> Thu, 19 May 2011 10:23:45 +0000 drorzel 47445 at https://www.scienceblogs.com Irony on the internet https://www.scienceblogs.com/digitalbio/2010/11/08/irony-on-the-internet <span>Irony on the internet</span> <div class="field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field--item"><p><a href="http://chronicle.com/blogs/wiredcampus/new-web-site-offers-career-resilience-advice-for-women-academics/28044?sid=wc&amp;utm_source=wc&amp;utm_medium=en">Wired Campus</a> shared an interesting story this morning about a career site for female science / engineering professionals. The site is called <a href="http://careerwise.asu.edu/">ASU CareerWISE</a> and its mission is to help women with problem solving.</p> <p>I like the idea and I like that they built the site in Drupal, since I've become a big Drupal fan over the past year, but I think they've missed the point in a big way.</p> <p>You see, <em>every</em> link on the front page leads me to this:</p> <p><img src="http://scienceblogs.com/digitalbio/wp-content/blogs.dir/460/files/2012/04/i-0e0c50875575054bfa6dbba839177b14-career_wise.png" alt="i-0e0c50875575054bfa6dbba839177b14-career_wise.png" /></p> <p>Now, I could be wrong, and I do understand the need for password protection in sensitive matters, but if I were looking for help with problem solving, and I clicked a link and hit a registration page, I would go somewhere else.</p> </div> <span><a title="View user profile." href="/author/sporte" lang="" about="/author/sporte" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">sporte</a></span> <span>Mon, 11/08/2010 - 04:51</span> <div class="field field--name-field-blog-tags field--type-entity-reference field--label-inline"> <div class="field--label">Tags</div> <div class="field--items"> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/biotechnology" hreflang="en">biotechnology</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/science-outreach" hreflang="en">science outreach</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/web-resources" hreflang="en">web resources</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/careers" hreflang="en">careers</a></div> </div> </div> <section> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1903016" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1289221697"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>No, not <i>every</i> link. The <a href="http://careerwise.asu.edu/contact">Contact</a> link at the bottom does not (as one example). That doesn't invalidate your point.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1903016&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="OyrRgpcCZalKqBERje1Q-u7QfZBdepKu7DIXjfU_IjE"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">blf (not verified)</span> on 08 Nov 2010 <a href="https://www.scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/11622/feed#comment-1903016">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1903017" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1289225394"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>How about the further irony of a website that can't be bothered to host its own e-mail? That always looks rather unprofessional to me, and smacks of not having good technical expertise on hand. (I mean, an SMTP server is not a complicated beast, and there are plenty of free options these days.)</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1903017&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="3BOy8zM1jI249TpFybwg8TYmm4okWTTIj9kenhdBFok"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Calli Arcale (not verified)</span> on 08 Nov 2010 <a href="https://www.scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/11622/feed#comment-1903017">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="105" id="comment-1903018" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1289226053"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>@Calli: Do you mean the contact form? </p> <p>I don't have a problem with that. If someone enters information in the form, the email will be sent to a pre-programmed address.</p> <p>I'm just confused about the log-in requirement. It seems like a bit of misguided overkill.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1903018&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="2Spdh00o2KrWLjf8i_-1bT3fBy1LQAg-puylhd9RJk4"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a title="View user profile." href="/author/sporte" lang="" about="/author/sporte" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">sporte</a> on 08 Nov 2010 <a href="https://www.scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/11622/feed#comment-1903018">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/author/sporte"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/author/sporte" hreflang="en"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/pictures/59121-arsenic_protein-150x150-120x120.png?itok=o0ajJdDI" width="100" height="100" alt="Profile picture for user sporte" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1903019" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1289265246"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>I think Calli meant that the Tech Issues email was a gmail account, it just doesn't look professional. Now, its not a horrible idea necessarily to have an off site email, as a tech issue could have taken down the site and the page retrieved from the google cache.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1903019&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="nf9qfOYpzYzM0l-dw_NVoc6fcdRgNKlkUzHBjneAWlg"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Robert S. (not verified)</span> on 08 Nov 2010 <a href="https://www.scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/11622/feed#comment-1903019">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1903020" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1289265445"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>And they listened. The email is no longer listed. It would be good to have some tech email somewhere , so that the cache picks it up .</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1903020&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="lS_c0TDN2aPqLPGqyXBTjYki-8c5RNZDidwxLRBGz7Y"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Robert S. (not verified)</span> on 08 Nov 2010 <a href="https://www.scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/11622/feed#comment-1903020">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1903021" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1289267218"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>It looks like they set the content permissions wrong. It's an easy mistake for a new Drupal developer. You build the site while you are logged in and don't realize that anonymous users can't see all your great work. Not hard to fix either.</p> <p>What's wrong with a gmail account? It's a great free service with excellent spam filtering and protects your real addresses from junkmail. Just the thing for an online form.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1903021&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="mTyfoleLmBYBn7MCSj_xYGYY2LtXwkkwoPSIhzO3ABg"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Ron (not verified)</span> on 08 Nov 2010 <a href="https://www.scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/11622/feed#comment-1903021">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1903022" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1289279807"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Are you using commons? If so and you want to remove the required login let me know and I can walk you through it</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1903022&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="Lg8Er--FLhxOEK7AbL8smG4mYnzYS2fi6t3Rep1RZDw"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Robert pope (not verified)</span> on 09 Nov 2010 <a href="https://www.scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/11622/feed#comment-1903022">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1903023" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1289310062"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Hey there,</p> <p>The site has just gone through a major update. Looking at the screen capture above it seems like you may have been trying to access the site while it was still in private beta. The site is now open to the public. Head back to the url: careerwise.asu.edu and click on the "create a free account" link in the upper left hand corner. Hopefully we have addressed some of the issues raised here.</p> <p>Kind regards,</p> <p>Alex</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1903023&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="g1dhfBHjxvUJ9alY15HlKYOufqt5e0869F0tT9OliSU"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Alex (not verified)</span> on 09 Nov 2010 <a href="https://www.scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/11622/feed#comment-1903023">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="105" id="comment-1903024" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1289310560"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Hi Alex,</p> <p>I don't think the site was in beta mode unless you sent the press release to Wired Campus a little prematurely. When I wrote the article about the site yesterday, I thought that since Wired Campus had written about it, that it was ready for business. </p> <p>Anyway, I took a look just now, but all the links still show the same behavior: Access Denied. </p> <p>I also think you're missing the point. </p> <p>I think at least some of the content should be accessible without requiring someone to create an account. </p> <p>Why would I bother creating an account if I don't see anything that makes it look like it would be worthwhile to do so?</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1903024&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="W-VtuO66R3HG5vQdGBFMBMnDmvz4AKk9kqkfy_Cyir4"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a title="View user profile." href="/author/sporte" lang="" about="/author/sporte" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">sporte</a> on 09 Nov 2010 <a href="https://www.scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/11622/feed#comment-1903024">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/author/sporte"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/author/sporte" hreflang="en"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/pictures/59121-arsenic_protein-150x150-120x120.png?itok=o0ajJdDI" width="100" height="100" alt="Profile picture for user sporte" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1903025" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1289414468"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>The organisation should change its aim.</p> <p>Sure it's about 'the goal of increasing womenâs persistence in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) doctoral programs' .. but is also dedicated to restricting all information they provide and working to prevent any information being publicly disseminated. They have taken active steps to prevent any information they provide being shared.</p> <p>Alex - you seem to have some inside information. Why have they done this? Surely they realise that it is the worst possible strategy for a site that is meant to be supporting others ?</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1903025&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="RQzGL0B9JnTxIdJtONgEsdabcUSrBlbEJHmko8pnHYk"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Mac (not verified)</span> on 10 Nov 2010 <a href="https://www.scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/11622/feed#comment-1903025">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="105" id="comment-1903026" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1289471588"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>@Mac - I don't Alex understands that this strategy will drive people away.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1903026&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="Apsn3vSSOX9Z3Ux3T19i2gzXOgOSeS710uJUBnWnAgc"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a title="View user profile." href="/author/sporte" lang="" about="/author/sporte" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">sporte</a> on 11 Nov 2010 <a href="https://www.scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/11622/feed#comment-1903026">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/author/sporte"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/author/sporte" hreflang="en"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/pictures/59121-arsenic_protein-150x150-120x120.png?itok=o0ajJdDI" width="100" height="100" alt="Profile picture for user sporte" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> </section> <ul class="links inline list-inline"><li class="comment-forbidden"><a href="/user/login?destination=/digitalbio/2010/11/08/irony-on-the-internet%23comment-form">Log in</a> to post comments</li></ul> Mon, 08 Nov 2010 09:51:20 +0000 sporte 69930 at https://www.scienceblogs.com What would you rather watch? A Lady Gaga spoof or Sydney Brenner? https://www.scienceblogs.com/digitalbio/2010/10/03/what-would-you-rather-watch-a <span>What would you rather watch? A Lady Gaga spoof or Sydney Brenner?</span> <div class="field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Jonathan Eisen (@<a href="http://phylogenomics.blogspot.com/">phylogenomics</a>) shared this wonderful Lady Gaga lab spoof on Twitter the other day. It rocks. </p> <p>And, it makes me wonder if my pals who've been thinking about getting students interested in careers by having scientists talk on camera might be going at this the wrong way. Sure, videos of scientists talking are totally fascinating (yawn..) and... </p> <p><em>Oh right, where was I? </em></p> <p>Well, here's the thing. If you want to get kids interested in something, you have to use something that interests them. Your strategy isn't going to work unless the kids find it intriguing enough to go watch it on their own. </p> <p>My kids will go watch a Lady Gaga video. Lots of cajoling, promises, promises, promises, let's face it. Maybe my kids are not like other kids, but nothing will entice mine to go watch career videos and they're certainly not going to go looking for them on their own. Interviews with amazing scientists, like the ones that the Cold Spring Harbor Lab education group made with Syndey Brenner in <a href="http://www.dnai.org">DNAi</a> are entertaining for teachers, but they put teenagers to sleep. </p> <p>Lady Gaga, on the other hand....</p> <p>Well, kids will watch music. </p> <p>I thought it might be fun to compile a list of our favorite music videos (lab related our course!) and suggest these to high school teachers who are seeking to interest students in lab careers.</p> <object width="560" height="340"><param name="movie" value="http://www.youtube.com/v/ZilqYp_9-Wc?fs=1&amp;hl=en_US" /><param name="allowFullScreen" value="true" /><param name="allowscriptaccess" value="always" /><embed src="http://www.youtube.com/v/ZilqYp_9-Wc?fs=1&amp;hl=en_US" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" allowscriptaccess="always" allowfullscreen="true" width="560" height="340"></embed></object><p> "I want your glove, yeah, yeah, yeah, I want your glove"</p> <p>What's your favorite lab music video? </p> <p><strong>10/4/2010 Update</strong>: @Bora kindly let me know that this video comes from one of our Sciblings. Yeah! And, she has posted the complete <a href="http://scienceblogs.com/oscillator/2010/02/lady_gagas_lab_romance.php">the lyrics</a> here. Nice work Christina!</p> </div> <span><a title="View user profile." href="/author/sporte" lang="" about="/author/sporte" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">sporte</a></span> <span>Sun, 10/03/2010 - 14:24</span> <div class="field field--name-field-blog-tags field--type-entity-reference field--label-inline"> <div class="field--label">Tags</div> <div class="field--items"> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/biotechnology" hreflang="en">biotechnology</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/science-culture" hreflang="en">Science Culture</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/science-education" hreflang="en">Science Education</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/science-outreach" hreflang="en">science outreach</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/teaching" hreflang="en">teaching</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/videos" hreflang="en">videos</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/web-resources" hreflang="en">web resources</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/careers" hreflang="en">careers</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/lab-music-videos" hreflang="en">lab music videos</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/science-education" hreflang="en">Science Education</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/videos" hreflang="en">videos</a></div> </div> </div> <section> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1903007" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1286137647"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>I guess I have to question the whole premise. Why in the world would you try to interest kids who are not already interested in a science career? Nothing good can possibly come of enticing impressionable young people into a difficult career on the basis of nerdy remakes of popular songs. </p> <p>This song is fun, and nothing more. I think it is highly unethical to try to use subterfuge like this to encourage students to enter an over-crowded and under-appreciated field. If students already have a passion for science, fine. Otherwise, leave them alone and let them make their own decisions based on the reality of a scientific career.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1903007&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="GnCJD7BaXapp_qOYdlB_x1zdNINSMgCO6_1D03VCaEw"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Tex (not verified)</span> on 03 Oct 2010 <a href="https://www.scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/11622/feed#comment-1903007">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1903008" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1286147945"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>The GAGA Pokerface parody, Neutra face, wherein the danger of being stuck in the office late is exhibited, and speaks to me of the many hours I spent laying out school magazines :-)</p> <p><a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xHCu28bfxSI">http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xHCu28bfxSI</a></p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1903008&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="YjHGklhPPnGPKV9JVuJ6ww0tewRJ1RZUDM3VNqDTOTI"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Zane (not verified)</span> on 03 Oct 2010 <a href="https://www.scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/11622/feed#comment-1903008">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1903009" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1286147973"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Piffle, Tex. Most kids do NOT have any idea of what a career "feels" like. This has a realistic lab, crowded (unlike movie sets). It shows *real* researchers, who are quite young, and quite fun-loving... again, not what they may have seen in "science labs" in movies. It isn't a matter of making someone who isn't interested in science want to be a scientist, but letting someone who likes science, but maybe thinks they'd be bored and intimidated by formality know there are places they would be at home in.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1903009&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="8AXrmLiD8Ph6wHQRbbF4CjKy5m2tT1VfxHhE-tsDqa4"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Samantha Vimes (not verified)</span> on 03 Oct 2010 <a href="https://www.scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/11622/feed#comment-1903009">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1903010" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1286186603"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Omg, my radio station is doing a Diva Battle and I will not let Gaga lose to Madonna, vote for Lady Gaga here so she can win!<a href="http://my1061.com/pages/contests/live-like-a-diva.html">http://my1061.com/pages/contests/live-like-a-diva.html</a></p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1903010&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="bAjj7Jjn6F7qX3aK-uYcdAGldolQFRJXBV2PoVqroX8"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a rel="nofollow" href="http://www.my1061.com" lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">JoJo (not verified)</a> on 04 Oct 2010 <a href="https://www.scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/11622/feed#comment-1903010">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> </section> <ul class="links inline list-inline"><li class="comment-forbidden"><a href="/user/login?destination=/digitalbio/2010/10/03/what-would-you-rather-watch-a%23comment-form">Log in</a> to post comments</li></ul> Sun, 03 Oct 2010 18:24:08 +0000 sporte 69926 at https://www.scienceblogs.com Cathedral-Building in Science https://www.scienceblogs.com/principles/2010/06/15/cathedral-building-in-science <span>Cathedral-Building in Science</span> <div class="field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Tommaso Dorigo has an <a href="http://www.scientificblogging.com/quantum_diaries_survivor/blog/should_greene_and_kachru_work_string_theory">interesting post</a> spinning off a <a href="http://www.math.columbia.edu/%7Ewoit/wordpress/?p=2998">description</a> of the <a href="http://www.worldsciencefestival.com/hidden-dimensions">Hidden Dimensions</a> program at the World Science Festival (don't bother with the comments to Tommaso's post, though). He quotes a bit in which Brian Greene and Shamit Kachru both admitted that they don't expect to see experimental evidence of extra dimensions in their lifetime, then cites a <a href="http://www.math.columbia.edu/%7Ewoit/wordpress/?p=2998&amp;cpage=1#comment-56899">commenter</a> saying "Why the f*** are you working on it, then?" Tommaso offers a semi-quantitative way to determine whether some long-term project is worth the risk, which is amusing.</p> <p>I was reminded of this when I looked at the <a href="http://www.nytimes.com/2010/06/15/science/space/15kepler.html?partner=rss&amp;emc=rss&amp;pagewanted=all">Dennis Overbye story about Kepler</a> that's in this morning's links dump. Toward the end, he quotes a researcher making an interesting analogy:</p> <blockquote><p>The public wants to know whether there is life on other planets," [Kepler team leader William] Borucki said, noting that it could take decades. The effort to get an answer, he said, reminds him of the building of the great cathedrals in Europe, in which each generation of workers had to tell themselves that "someday it will be built." </p> </blockquote> <p>I don't think it's trivially obvious that really long-term projects aren't worth working on, but I do think it takes a certain type of personality. I know I couldn't do it (but then I couldn't do theory, period). The cathedral analogy is probably a good way of expressing the attitude you need to have if you're going to work in those areas.</p> <p>I'm curious as to how other people feel about this, so here's a poll question. If you were a new grad student about to embark on the study of Science (not necessarily physics), would you be excited to work on a research program that would not see an experimental test for a long time? Here are some possible time scales:</p> <p><script type="text/javascript" charset="utf-8" src="http://static.polldaddy.com/p/3349038.js"></script></p><p></p><noscript><br /><a href="http://polldaddy.com/poll/3349038/">I would be excited to work on a scientific theory that will not be tested/confirmed for: (check all that apply)</a><span style="font-size:9px;"><a href="http://polldaddy.com/features-surveys/">survey software</a></span><br /></noscript> <p>This is a ticky-box poll, not a radio button poll, so please choose all that apply. Also, please click the box for the final item, so I can get a reasonably accurate vote count, as the percentages are sometimes screwy on these.</p> </div> <span><a title="View user profile." href="/author/drorzel" lang="" about="/author/drorzel" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">drorzel</a></span> <span>Tue, 06/15/2010 - 05:49</span> <div class="field field--name-field-blog-tags field--type-entity-reference field--label-inline"> <div class="field--label">Tags</div> <div class="field--items"> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/news-0" hreflang="en">In the News</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/physics" hreflang="en">Physics</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/polls" hreflang="en">polls</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/science" hreflang="en">Science</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/string-theory" hreflang="en">String Theory</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/theory" hreflang="en">Theory</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/academia" hreflang="en">Academia</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/careers" hreflang="en">careers</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/cathedral" hreflang="en">cathedral</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/education" hreflang="en">education</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/history" hreflang="en">History</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/poll" hreflang="en">poll</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/sociology-science" hreflang="en">sociology of science</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/string-theory-0" hreflang="en">String Theory</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/physics" hreflang="en">Physics</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/polls" hreflang="en">polls</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/science" hreflang="en">Science</a></div> </div> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-blog-categories field--type-entity-reference field--label-inline"> <div class="field--label">Categories</div> <div class="field--items"> <div class="field--item"><a href="/channel/physical-sciences" hreflang="en">Physical Sciences</a></div> </div> </div> <section> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1635743" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1276596220"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>I feel like you need more options after "Not in my lifetime." In my childrens' lifetime? Possibly. Not in the next 1000 years? Maybe not. </p> <p>K</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1635743&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="ozBmHWJGIXXwUfjbr2z6bVW6SoayvIGX6ty8EUGwaao"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a rel="nofollow" href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/kevinq2000" lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">KevinQ (not verified)</a> on 15 Jun 2010 <a href="https://www.scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/11622/feed#comment-1635743">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1635744" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1276597701"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>When I was a wee grad student working on theories of the interstellar medium, one of the diagnostics we could calculate was the column densities of O+5 ions, which provided sharp discrimination between theories of various kinds. It was something one could speculate on without cost to one's reputation, because with wavelengths of 103.2 and 103.8 nm, it was unobservable by the telescopes we had then (and Hubble, launched later).</p> <p>Now, thanks to FUSE (and predecessors such as IMAP and HUT), we have the data. But it took 20 years.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1635744&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="u4nTgv4jHlBPwfWsaBufVdNUz1HdFO_7aSuJcwFFEJg"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Richard Edgar (not verified)</span> on 15 Jun 2010 <a href="https://www.scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/11622/feed#comment-1635744">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1635745" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1276598753"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>I don't think it really works like that in science. When you are building a cathedral, you might not see it in your lifetime, but you know there is no obstacle to it being built eventually. In science, there are literally bazillions of ideas that *could* be true of the world, and your goal is to find one of the correct ones, not just to work on something because you like it. I think this applies to high energy physics as much as to the rest of science, despite what some might tell you about finding the truth uniquely through beauty or whatever. Therefore, if you can't find an experimental test then how would you know you were working on the right theory?</p> <p>Add to that the fact that theoretical physicists are often extremely cavalier with mathematical rigor. They can afford to be in most circumstances because experiments will tell them if they have made an error and then mathematicians will clean up the mess for the next few decades if the theory turns out to be right. However, if you lack experiments and you lack rigor, then you really have no basis for any conclusions apart from intuition, which is really not good enough.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1635745&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="ALac-jL8Fb8mMob1cd_Xo6hghslwHMFxm__6xI7hWeA"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a rel="nofollow" href="http://mattleifer.info" lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Matt Leifer (not verified)</a> on 15 Jun 2010 <a href="https://www.scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/11622/feed#comment-1635745">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1635746" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1276599940"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>I am not sure these sort of questions are framed the right way. Maybe it is useful to stay away from string theory. Suppose you are a beginning student considering working on high Tc superconductivity, or quantum computing, for example. The lofty goals of these fields (say building a quantum computer, or "understanding" the pairing mechanism in the cuprates) may or may not be achievable in 20 years, in our lifetime, or ever. Nobody really knows. It may be more useful for that student to ask simpler and more concrete questions, like whether there is steady progress, a constant flow of new ideas, and a sense of vitality and intellectual satisfaction in the community. Of course, for any given field opinions about the answers to those questions will diverge, but they are much more relevant that the grand "cathedral" question.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1635746&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="8SA4VRuE92D6nEqTm7Fy4IWGxF65qzAZBSFFUo41Pwc"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Moshe (not verified)</span> on 15 Jun 2010 <a href="https://www.scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/11622/feed#comment-1635746">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1635747" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1276600157"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>We <i>are</i> working on a project of understanding where we live that has taken many lifetimes. Enjoy the milestones. Should I not labor because I will never see spires and angels?</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1635747&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="xjMRaIw3u9bxQSl_W490QpdCKOT4UMT2RHsUVsP9qjc"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Peter Morgan (not verified)</span> on 15 Jun 2010 <a href="https://www.scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/11622/feed#comment-1635747">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1635748" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1276602508"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Like Moshe, I think you aren't asking the right question. Part of it is that we don't know how long it will actually take to achieve the goal (classic example: fusion power, which has been 20-ish years from reality since before I was born). Part of it is that sometimes something comes completely out of the blue and it takes a few years before people understand it well enough to ask intelligent questions (as Rabi commented regarding the discovery of the muon: "Who ordered that?") There are entire fields such as astrophysics where many of the theories can never be experimentally proven, only tested against remote observations.</p> <p>A better question to ask would be, "Can you envision an experiment which would verify or disprove your theory?" It doesn't have to be something realistically achievable, but something that you could envision doing if you had infinite time and resources available. Something like high-Tc superconductivity or the discovery of the muon, where experiment is way ahead of theory, definitely meets this test. So does astrophysics: in situ probes of a supernova explosion could verify or falsify certain theories of supernovae. Quantum computing is more ambiguous because the negative of the ultimate goal is likely unprovable, but there are steps along the way where we might someday be able to do the experiment. One of my issues with string theory is that I haven't heard anyone articulate an experimental test of the theory, and some substantial parts of it, like the "landscape" ("Define the Universe. Give 10500 examples."), probably aren't falsifiable.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1635748&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="35Skxa20a6PwFF4pfOkDm_oxx3WKe8cZ5kSvKx8gz3c"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Eric Lund (not verified)</span> on 15 Jun 2010 <a href="https://www.scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/11622/feed#comment-1635748">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1635749" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1276613391"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>As a mathematician and better than average armchair philosopher, I find this question quite strange.</p> <p>A historian or philologist would never think to be interested in whether his or her work will be validated in X years, whatever X is. She or he would ask instead whether his or her work is interesting and useful to present and future historians or philologists.</p> <p>One can have (intellectual) influence or impact on one's field without being right.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1635749&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="UMfkzmjBkGgOFdNCpx9RB9u2vjDkkTGLcy19hSSVDgk"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">quasihumanist (not verified)</span> on 15 Jun 2010 <a href="https://www.scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/11622/feed#comment-1635749">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1635750" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1276690798"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>As an undergrad working on summer math research, and looking to pursue an academic career in mathematics, I can safely say that I am currently just happy to be doing research, regardless of whether we end up proving a particular theory anytime soon.</p> <p>Of course, in mathematics it is a little different, as, in my experience, while working towards a larger problem, we often solve smaller, but still relevant, problems along the way. For instance, my research right now is tangentially related to Artin's Conjecture (the one regarding primitive roots), but I certainly don't expect us to solve it - I would be very pleased, and perhaps not altogether surprised if it were solved in my lifetime. However, we are still yielding interesting, and new, results, which is a very exciting experience.</p> <p>I suppose, in math, very rarely are you ever pursuing a theory that you have no actual way of testing. Either you prove it, disprove it, or it remains a conjecture to be tackled another day. It is possible, particularly in computational number theory, to gather evidence to support claims, but even overwhelming statistical evidence needs to be taken with a very large grain of salt in mathematics.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1635750&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="fCFF0Sql3A7JBIUGrlJTApVATNqyVyMO-SgOlCtiEGY"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Istarion (not verified)</span> on 16 Jun 2010 <a href="https://www.scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/11622/feed#comment-1635750">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1635751" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1276708099"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Don't know about you, but that doggy is pretty cute, too.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1635751&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="TRQP3pnpd8hQ08eQH06KqdJQlB-QqvAAqcW3nQ_USww"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">lula (not verified)</span> on 16 Jun 2010 <a href="https://www.scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/11622/feed#comment-1635751">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1635752" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1276757168"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>I am actually here for the dog stories, but I check the baby pictures as dog stories was not an option.</p> <p>As a side note most of work for 20 to 25 years on a long term project that may or may not show any progress in our life times. They are called children.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1635752&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="BrJV9sp1gkdfiCB-yGW3Tv0FX7I2bzhc9FBtvrK0Wrk"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Jim C (not verified)</span> on 17 Jun 2010 <a href="https://www.scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/11622/feed#comment-1635752">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> </section> <ul class="links inline list-inline"><li class="comment-forbidden"><a href="/user/login?destination=/principles/2010/06/15/cathedral-building-in-science%23comment-form">Log in</a> to post comments</li></ul> Tue, 15 Jun 2010 09:49:38 +0000 drorzel 46618 at https://www.scienceblogs.com Webby Nominee: NOVA's The Secret Life of Scientists https://www.scienceblogs.com/grrlscientist/2010/04/23/webby-nominee-novas-the-secret <span>Webby Nominee: NOVA&#039;s The Secret Life of Scientists</span> <div class="field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field--item"><p><span style="font-size: 10px">tags: <a target="window" href="http://technorati.com/tag/The+Secret+Life+of+Scientists" rel="tag">The Secret Life of Scientists</a>, <a target="window" href="http://technorati.com/tag/careers" rel="tag">careers</a>, <a target="window" href="http://technorati.com/tag/Webby+Awards" rel="tag">Webby Awards</a>, <a target="window" href="http://technorati.com/tag/scientists" rel="tag">scientists</a>, <a target="window" href="http://technorati.com/tag/public+outreach" rel="tag">public outreach</a>, <a target="window" href="http://technorati.com/tag/educational" rel="tag">educational</a>, <a target="window" href="http://technorati.com/tag/funny" rel="tag">funny</a>, <a target="window" href="http://technorati.com/tag/documentary" rel="tag">documentary</a>, <a target="window" href="http://technorati.com/tag/NOVA" rel="tag">NOVA</a>, <a target="window" href="http://technorati.com/tag/PBS" rel="tag">PBS</a>, <a target="window" href="http://technorati.com/tag/streaming+video" rel="tag">streaming video</a></span></p> <p>Okay, my peeps, I need your help. PBS is airing a NOVA series called "The Secret Life of Scientists." This miniseries has been nominated for a Webby Award for the Best Documentary Series, and is almost tied with a David Lynch film. We need your help to push this one over the top and give it the support of the people! I've embedded a clip below that I know you will enjoy (interestingly, I know several of these scientists in real life, too). So watch the video, laugh and then VOTE!</p> <!--more--><object width="560" height="340"><param name="movie" value="http://www.youtube.com/v/odnPOt86aFU&amp;hl=en_US&amp;fs=1&amp;rel=0" /><param name="allowFullScreen" value="true" /><param name="allowscriptaccess" value="always" /><embed src="http://www.youtube.com/v/odnPOt86aFU&amp;hl=en_US&amp;fs=1&amp;showinfo=0" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" allowscriptaccess="always" allowfullscreen="true" width="560" height="340"></embed></object><p> More highlights from <a target="window" href="http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/nova/secretlife/">The Secret Life of Scientists</a>.</p> <p>Webby Awards: <a target="window" href="http://www.youtube.com/webby?x=documentaryseries">VOTE HERE</a>.</p> </div> <span><a title="View user profile." href="/author/grrlscientist" lang="" about="/author/grrlscientist" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">grrlscientist</a></span> <span>Thu, 04/22/2010 - 23:59</span> <div class="field field--name-field-blog-tags field--type-entity-reference field--label-inline"> <div class="field--label">Tags</div> <div class="field--items"> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/cultural-observation" hreflang="en">cultural observation</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/education" hreflang="en">education</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/employment" hreflang="en">employment</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/streaming-videos" hreflang="en">streaming videos</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/your-inner-child" hreflang="en">your inner child</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/careers" hreflang="en">careers</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/documentary" hreflang="en">documentary</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/funny" hreflang="en">funny</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/nova" hreflang="en">NOVA</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/pbs" hreflang="en">PBS</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/public-outreach" hreflang="en">public outreach</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/scientists" hreflang="en">Scientists</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/streaming-video" hreflang="en">streaming video</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/secret-life-scientists" hreflang="en">The Secret Life of Scientists</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/video" hreflang="en">Video</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/webby-awards" hreflang="en">Webby Awards</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/cultural-observation" hreflang="en">cultural observation</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/education" hreflang="en">education</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/employment" hreflang="en">employment</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/streaming-videos" hreflang="en">streaming videos</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/your-inner-child" hreflang="en">your inner child</a></div> </div> </div> <section> <article data-comment-user-id="112" id="comment-2075094" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1272004955"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>This is a great video. If only we we are all so talented... I am heading off to vote now. Thanks for this.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=2075094&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="Z09FvPB6O9joxgfn0L0UXFIjcvKvpHN1DzYvwsjx6iY"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a title="View user profile." href="/author/pronald" lang="" about="/author/pronald" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">pronald</a> on 23 Apr 2010 <a href="https://www.scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/11622/feed#comment-2075094">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/author/pronald"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/author/pronald" hreflang="en"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-2075095" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1272014156"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>What a beautiful series! Just voted.<br /> Competition is tough, though. Nice projects, all of them.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=2075095&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="KmGKC4vuJ2v56nz6echdUHxlKK0N3PyjEimia6qJ1BA"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a rel="nofollow" href="http://morethanhoney-blog.de" lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">kerstin (not verified)</a> on 23 Apr 2010 <a href="https://www.scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/11622/feed#comment-2075095">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> </section> <ul class="links inline list-inline"><li class="comment-forbidden"><a href="/user/login?destination=/grrlscientist/2010/04/23/webby-nominee-novas-the-secret%23comment-form">Log in</a> to post comments</li></ul> Fri, 23 Apr 2010 03:59:27 +0000 grrlscientist 90712 at https://www.scienceblogs.com Journal Editor Speaks about His Experiences https://www.scienceblogs.com/neurotopia/2009/08/10/journal-editor-speaks-about-hi <span>Journal Editor Speaks about His Experiences</span> <div class="field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field--item"><p>(I had this whole post ready talking about flexible representations, but now my computer is borked -- stupid monitor! -- so this is going to have to do.)</p> <p><a href="http://www.marginalrevolution.com/marginalrevolution/2009/08/edifying-editing.html">Tyler Cowen over at Marginal Revolution</a> links to <a href="http://www.mcafee.cc/Papers/PDF/EditorExperiences.pdf">a piece by a former editor at <em>American Economic Review</em></a> telling all about how papers are accepted for publication. In economics this process may be slightly different, but I found the piece addressed several questions I had about the process.</p> <blockquote><p>I reject 10-15% of papers without refereeing, a so-called "desk rejection." This prompts some complaints - "I paid for those reviews with my submission fee" - but in fact when appropriate a desk rejection is the kind thing to do. If, on reading a paper, I find that there is no chance I am going to publish a paper, why should I waste the referees' time and make the author wait? Not all authors agree, of course, but in my view, we are in the business of evaluating papers, not improving papers. If you want to improve your paper, ask your colleagues for advice. When you know what you want to say and how to say it, submit it to a journal.</p> <p>As noted above, some authors are irate about desk rejections on the principle that their submission fee pays for refereeing, or that they deserve refereeing. But in fact the editor, not referees, make decisions and I generally spend a significant amount of time making a desk rejection. I think of a desk rejection as a circumstance where the editor doesn't feel refereeing advice is warranted.</p></blockquote> <!--more--><blockquote>There are authors who attempt to annoy the editor. I'm not sure why they consider this to be a good strategy. I attempt to be unfailingly professional in my journal dealings, as this is what I seek in editors handling my work. Back when I had a journal assistant (everything is electronic now), I asked her to impose a "24 hour cooling off period" whenever I seemed to write something emotional or unprofessional. I still write and delay<br /> sending even now, if I feel at all peevish or irritated. Authors, in their attempt to irritate<br /> the editor, will ask "Have you even read my paper?" This is a more subtle question than<br /> it first appears, for there is an elastic meaning of the word 'read.' The amount of time necessary to establish beyond a reasonable doubt that a paper is not suitable for a journal ranges from a few minutes - the paper's own summary of its findings are incomprehensible or not ambitious - to many hours. One of the effects of experience as an editor is that the amount of time spent on the bottom half of the papers goes to about zero (except for the desk rejections, which get a bit more), and most of the time is devoted to those papers that are close to the acceptable versus unacceptable line. <p>Gans and Shepherd (1994)'s article created among editors what I think of as the fear of rejecting the "Market for Lemons," based on the fact that Akerlof's 1970 "Market for Lemons" paper was rejected by three prominent journals, including the <em>AER</em>. No one wants to go down in history as the editor who rejected a paper that subsequently contributed greatly to a person's winning a Nobel prize. However, I eventually came to the conclusion that the fear is overblown. There are type 1 and type 2 errors and any procedure that never rejects the "Market for Lemons" produces a low average quality. One lesson, indeed, is to be open to the new and different. I use a higher bar for 'booming' topics that generate a lot of current excitement and hence may be a fad. (At the time of this writing, behavioral economics is such a topic.) A second lesson from Akerlof's experience is to be careful in crafting rejection letters; the letters Akerlof received, with their smug acceptance of general equilibrium as the end state of economics, look pathetic today. Finally, Akerlof's experience was unusual in that his rejection wasn't perpetrated by Lord Keynes. Absent Keynes, who I think suffered mightily from the personal agenda problem discussed above, there are not so many great rejected papers.</p></blockquote> <p>There is a lot more interesting stuff in the piece, so I would read the whole thing.</p> <p>The bit about authors getting indignant about either reviewer or editor commentary definitely rings true. I am willing to grant that my experiences on this subject are rather limited. My first first-author paper was just accepted for publication. But even given my limited exposure, I already have heard horror stories about authors going ballistic over what in hindsight are either relatively innocuous critiques or very apt criticism. I have heard about corresponding authors emailing journal editors almost daily to see what the status of the paper was -- as if this would in some way accelerate the process. </p> <p>To be fair, reviews are sometimes just ridiculous, nitpicky nonsense. Sometimes reviewers or editors fundamentally misunderstood what we were trying to argue. But acting like an insecure teenager trying to secure a date by badgering the other person is hardly going to improve matters. It almost makes me want to install some sort of "3-day rule" for the journal editing process. </p> <p>Likewise, I am always fascinated by authors who rage against the failure of editors and reviewers to instantly recognize their cosmic genius. The point about the paper that was rejected and eventually became part of a Nobel Prize is well-taken. To be fair, groundbreaking research regularly encounters opposition, particularly when it stamps on someone's theoretical toes -- which is nearly always. But on some level, the "raging against the dying of the light" or "they just don't get it" response is actively counterproductive. If your work is good, fine. Likely in addition to the politics, there is some aspect of your writing that is impeding understanding. By throwing a tantrum, you are ignoring what aspects of the article could be improved.</p> <p>The best advice I heard in graduate school is that reviews are like bad-tasting medicine. They may not work. They may not be necessary. But the best thing for you to do is to hold your nose and swallow them. </p> <p>In any case, my experience with the process has given me substantially more respect for the forbearance of editors. In many ways, being a good editor is like being a good blogger. You have to have strong opinions about a lot of things, but also be able to suppress those opinions when clear evidence emerges to the contrary. You have to be willing to be vocal, but also be able to remember that correspondence over impersonal media is often misinterpreted in the most tendentious light.</p> <p><a href="http://engrishfunny.com/2009/07/17/engrish-mama-science/"><img src="http://engrishfunny.wordpress.com/files/2009/07/engrish-funny-mama-science.jpg" alt="engrish funny mama science" title="engrish-funny-mama-science" width="500" height="375" class="mine_4664181" /></a><br />see more <a href="http://engrishfunny.com">Engrish</a></p> <p>Did it just say "yo mama"?</p> </div> <span><a title="View user profile." href="/author/purepedantry" lang="" about="/author/purepedantry" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">purepedantry</a></span> <span>Mon, 08/10/2009 - 04:52</span> <div class="field field--name-field-blog-tags field--type-entity-reference field--label-inline"> <div class="field--label">Tags</div> <div class="field--items"> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/academia" hreflang="en">Academia</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/careers" hreflang="en">careers</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/editors" hreflang="en">editors</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/journal" hreflang="en">journal</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/reviewers" hreflang="en">reviewers</a></div> </div> </div> <section> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-2482663" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1249900535"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Editors can have significant power, and not a few will abuse it out of personal bias and pique. Human nature is human nature, whether in science publishing or any creative enterprise.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=2482663&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="tb1Q85vEDo7nXmcTpGjUYkWyrsC4KeHS8_GDg7sVoJA"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a rel="nofollow" href="http://www.alfin2100.blogspot.com" lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Al Fin (not verified)</a> on 10 Aug 2009 <a href="https://www.scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/11622/feed#comment-2482663">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-2482664" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1249934529"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><blockquote><p>Not all authors agree, of course, but in my view, we are in the business of evaluating papers, not improving papers.</p></blockquote> <p>In the natural sciences, the vast majority of authors, reviewers, *and* journal editors would vehemently disagree with this. In fact, if you look at the editorial policies of many journals (including Nature) you will find explicit statements of editorial policy that are contrary to this.</p> <p>It does not surprise me that in non-scientific fields like economics, where there are no objective standards by which to assess work, you have overweening self-aggrandizing asshole journal editors like this former editor fuckwad.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=2482664&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="6pH1Ar6r8JhB6W_ufilLJCraoZ9TwfZLK2g2eMisWXQ"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a rel="nofollow" href="http://physioprof.wordpress.com" lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Comrade PhysioProf (not verified)</a> on 10 Aug 2009 <a href="https://www.scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/11622/feed#comment-2482664">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-2482665" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1249974817"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>"Sometimes reviewers or editors fundamentally misunderstood what we were trying to argue." and "Likewise, I am always fascinated by authors who rage against the failure of editors and reviewers to instantly recognize their cosmic genius."</p> <p>I have had years of experience as an author and reviewer. It is up to the author(s), not the editor nor reviewer, to make sure that the author's work is never misunderstood and that their cosmic genius is self-evident. You can be the smartest kid in the class -- but if you can't communicate that intellegence to a broad audience it will have very little impact. "Impact" is the criteria by which all good work is ultimately judged.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=2482665&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="AeUECKZibFPSvh7pD6VKrrmPEmb5IW_XR-ye0rZxzrM"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Tex (not verified)</span> on 11 Aug 2009 <a href="https://www.scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/11622/feed#comment-2482665">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-2482666" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1250108682"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Re: Annoying the Editor<br /> Do authors consider their future submissions when annoying the editor? There is an author whose papers will automatically receive a desk rejection from me in the future due to the annoyance factor. I accepted the first paper despite the whining and complaining, but no more...</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=2482666&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="r34cEzhai2yKEPOiXfhjEpun9CjC3rg-5T0r2jZMJ9o"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Who&#039;s Yer Daddy (not verified)</span> on 12 Aug 2009 <a href="https://www.scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/11622/feed#comment-2482666">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-2482667" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1250163755"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><blockquote><p>There is an author whose papers will automatically receive a desk rejection from me in the future due to the annoyance factor.</p></blockquote> <p>Nice job, asshole. It's dumbfuck self-aggrandizing journal editors like you who give decent editors a bad name. Hint: IT'S NOT ABOUT YOU! You exist to SERVE the scientific community; they do not exist to serve you.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=2482667&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="-VXa27ZMUSBGFk_5Yp1MbY7b0PqrBGidBTg8BF9yYZw"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a rel="nofollow" href="http://physioprof.wordpress.com" lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Comrade PhysioProf (not verified)</a> on 13 Aug 2009 <a href="https://www.scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/11622/feed#comment-2482667">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> </section> <ul class="links inline list-inline"><li class="comment-forbidden"><a href="/user/login?destination=/neurotopia/2009/08/10/journal-editor-speaks-about-hi%23comment-form">Log in</a> to post comments</li></ul> Mon, 10 Aug 2009 08:52:31 +0000 purepedantry 144294 at https://www.scienceblogs.com Hill-climbers vs. valley-crossers: is big science stifling innovation? https://www.scienceblogs.com/bioephemera/2009/04/29/hill-climbers-vs-valley-crosse <span>Hill-climbers vs. valley-crossers: is big science stifling innovation?</span> <div class="field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Mark Buchanan, quoting Lee Smolin, on how big science may be biased against innovative iconoclasts:</p> <blockquote><p>Some scientists, he suggests, are what we might call "hill climbers". They tend to be highly skilled in technical terms and their work mostly takes established lines of insight that pushes them further; they climb upward into the hills in some abstract space of scientific fitness, always taking small steps to improve the agreement of theory and observation. These scientists do "normal" science. In contrast, other scientists are more radical and adventurous in spirit, and they can be seen as "valley crossers". They may be less skilled technically, but they tend to have strong scientific intuition -- the ability to spot hidden assumptions and to look at familiar topics in totally new ways.<br /><br />To be most effective, Smolin argues, science needs a mix of hill climbers and valley crossers. Too many hill climbers doing normal science, and you end up sooner or later with lots of them stuck on the tops of local hills, each defending their own territory. Science then suffers from a lack of enough valley crossers able to strike out from those intellectually tidy positions to explore further away and find higher peaks.<br /><br />"This is the situation I believe we are in," says Smolin, "and we are in it because science has become professionalized in a way that takes the characteristics of a good hill climber as representative of what is a good, or promising, scientist. The valley crossers we need have been excluded or pushed to the margins." </p></blockquote> <p>Read more <a href="http://physicsworld.com/cws/article/print/38468">here</a>.</p> </div> <span><a title="View user profile." href="/author/bioephemera" lang="" about="/author/bioephemera" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">bioephemera</a></span> <span>Wed, 04/29/2009 - 09:30</span> <div class="field field--name-field-blog-tags field--type-entity-reference field--label-inline"> <div class="field--label">Tags</div> <div class="field--items"> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/education" hreflang="en">education</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/history-science-0" hreflang="en">history of science</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/science" hreflang="en">Science</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/science-culture-policy" hreflang="en">Science in Culture &amp; Policy</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/black-swans" hreflang="en">black swans</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/careers" hreflang="en">careers</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/innovation" hreflang="en">innovation</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/lee-smolin" hreflang="en">lee smolin</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/research" hreflang="en">Research</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/science-education" hreflang="en">Science Education</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/education" hreflang="en">education</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/history-science-0" hreflang="en">history of science</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/science" hreflang="en">Science</a></div> </div> </div> <section> <article data-comment-user-id="132" id="comment-2403341" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1241012794"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Ah, touches all my hot buttons!</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=2403341&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="39ArYaJd_vz6qjUN5VrBn-9EK0AGXX-5C8J65N8rR1Q"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a title="View user profile." href="/author/Bora-Zivkovic" lang="" about="/author/Bora-Zivkovic" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">clock</a> on 29 Apr 2009 <a href="https://www.scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/11622/feed#comment-2403341">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/author/Bora-Zivkovic"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/author/Bora-Zivkovic" hreflang="en"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/pictures/Bora%20Zivkovic.jpg?itok=QpyKnu_z" width="75" height="100" alt="Profile picture for user clock" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-2403342" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1241014145"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Part of the problem, IMO, is that professional scientists have invested many years in careers based on climbing their particular hill. Any indication that it's the wrong hill is a threat to a life-long investment. And of course, the higher they are in the food chain, the longer lifetime (on average) they've invested.</p> <p>Another point to consider is that when doing science becomes a job, it attracts many people who "just want to do their job", not think about, and especially not adapt to changes. Such people are also threatened by paradigm changes.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=2403342&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="JNwoJlKLJKpUnWvmDZ2ZYfT0-5tPVblwYv2QC8SxfL4"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a rel="nofollow" href="http://artksthoughts.blogspot.com" lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">AK (not verified)</a> on 29 Apr 2009 <a href="https://www.scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/11622/feed#comment-2403342">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-2403343" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1241272162"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>I am convinced that all this hand-wringing about scientific innovation being "stifled" by the "system" is a load of bullshit. I don't know Smolin, but most of these hand-wringers are either (1) prominent successful scientists who have benefited their entire careers from the "system" and have now decided in their dotage that it is "stifling" and should be changed or (2) disgruntled losers who never made it. The vast majority of scientists manage to do creative valuable science while working within the supposedly "stifling system".</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=2403343&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="xCVXKa-6zqvBMWEr7r6c-1XsgcngsG8UM0iYu5OdbrE"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a rel="nofollow" href="http://physioprof.wordpress.com" lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Comrade PhysioProf (not verified)</a> on 02 May 2009 <a href="https://www.scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/11622/feed#comment-2403343">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-2403344" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1241360067"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>I can't speak on the sciences, but there's a similar distinction in the arts between, one might say, "experimenters" and "refiners" of style. The distinction only goes so far, but in general experimental work tends to disregard history and technique while more refined work picks up and improves upon an existing style in some way. </p> <p>For better or worse, the favoritism seems to sway in the opposite direction in the arts...towards that of the experimenters. At least in the 20th century it appeared to.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=2403344&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="yFemuvpskBa8cL90Wu_RXaMalNu7DVfcoJBPvvINKR8"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Joe Leasure (not verified)</span> on 03 May 2009 <a href="https://www.scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/11622/feed#comment-2403344">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> </section> <ul class="links inline list-inline"><li class="comment-forbidden"><a href="/user/login?destination=/bioephemera/2009/04/29/hill-climbers-vs-valley-crosse%23comment-form">Log in</a> to post comments</li></ul> Wed, 29 Apr 2009 13:30:00 +0000 bioephemera 129442 at https://www.scienceblogs.com Author of "Motherhood, the Elephant in the Laboratory" Responds to Nature Review https://www.scienceblogs.com/thusspakezuska/2009/03/30/author-of-motherhood-the-eleph <span>Author of &quot;Motherhood, the Elephant in the Laboratory&quot; Responds to Nature Review</span> <div class="field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field--item"><p>A few days ago I wrote about <a href="http://scienceblogs.com/thusspakezuska/2009/03/the_problem_of_the_problem_of.php">The Problem of the Problem of Motherhood in Science</a>, a post inspired by <a href="http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v458/n7235/full/458150a.html">Meg Urry's book review</a> of <a href="http://www.cornellpress.cornell.edu/cup_detail.taf?ti_id=4821">Motherhood, the Elephant in the Laboratory</a> by Emily Monosson. A vigorous discussion ensued in the comments - thank you all for participating! It turns out the author of the book was paying attention, and she contacted me by email. Emily Monosson told me she feels her book was misrepresented in Meg Urry's review. I agreed to post here the contents of her email to me. </p> <p>Here's the email: </p> <!--more--><blockquote>I am writing, as editor of Motherhood the Elephant in the Laboratory, in response to your blog post which quoted Meg Urry's Nature review of the book. <p>I have responded to the Nature review in a letter to the editor because the review is an inaccurate representation of our book. While we all take from books what we want to see in them, it saddens me that a scientist like Urry would bring so much of her own agenda into a book review, rather than carefully reading and reviewing the book. The message of the book was that there are many ways of achieving success in science, not that children are an impediment to a successful career in science. Not one of us suggests that our careers would have been easier had we not had kids as Urry implies. In fact, a few reveal how having children has shaped their research so that it may more immediately benefit the next generation.</p> <p>Most disturbing is that Urry dismisses the career choices and contributions of those women whose career paths led them away from academia, suggesting that academia=success in science. While she's entitled to her opinion, had she stated it as such, I would have felt less compelled to respond to her review as many in science (unfortunately) feel similarly. Contributors to this book work for NASA, FDA, EDF, they write, they teach, the volunteer as scientists and yes, several are in academia.</p> <p>I do agree with Urry on one point - there are many good books on parenting and professing. This book was meant to add another dimension to the body of literature on science/family/success/, one which highlights the contributions made be those outside of the ivory towers to the sciences in addition to those made by academics (there were six academic moms out of the 34 contributors to the book.) Most importantly, among the contributors, no matter which career track we've chosen to follow, we support and respect each-other's choices. I'd like to think we are a model of a health scientific community. It takes all types.</p> <p>Last but not least, Urry attributes the two daughters who wrote chapters to me, which suggests that there were at least four essays she couldn't have read very closely. The Douglass sisters are the daughters of Anne Douglass a successful NASA scientist and mother of five. </p></blockquote> <p>Emily Monosson has promised to send me a copy of Motherhood, the Elephant in the Laboratory for review so I hope to offer you my own perspective on the book in the near future. I'm interested to see what it has to say in light of Monosson's comments here. I do note, however, this <a href="http://www.cornellpress.cornell.edu/cup_detail.taf?ti_id=4821">excerpt from the book blurb on the publisher's website</a>:</p> <blockquote><p>About half of the undergraduate and roughly 40 percent of graduate degree recipients in science and engineering are women. As increasing numbers of these women pursue research careers in science, many who choose to have children discover the unique difficulties of balancing a professional life in these highly competitive (and often male-dominated) fields with the demands of motherhood. Although this issue directly affects the career advancement of women scientists, it is rarely discussed as a professional concern, leaving individuals to face the dilemma on their own.</p></blockquote> <p>and juxtapose it with this quote from <a href="http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v458/n7235/full/458150a.html">Urry's review</a>:</p> <blockquote><p>More disturbing is the implication that in the absence of motherhood, women in academic science would have untroubled careers. This is naive. Evidence shows that female scientists without children do not fare better than those with children who remain full-time in the workforce. Neither advance as steadily as their male counterparts, with or without children. Some explanation other than family must be the reason for the slow advancement of women.</p></blockquote> <p>For the time being, I'll stand by what I said in my earlier post: Motherhood is <em>an</em> issue for a woman who chooses to work and have children, in science or in any career. It is not, however, <em>the</em> issue for women in science. But as I said, I look forward to getting the book and taking a closer look. </p> </div> <span><a title="View user profile." href="/author/thusspakezuska" lang="" about="/author/thusspakezuska" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">thusspakezuska</a></span> <span>Mon, 03/30/2009 - 15:05</span> <div class="field field--name-field-blog-tags field--type-entity-reference field--label-inline"> <div class="field--label">Tags</div> <div class="field--items"> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/naming-experience" hreflang="en">Naming Experience</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/what-theyre-saying" hreflang="en">What They&#039;re Saying</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/why-arent-you-reading" hreflang="en">Why Aren&#039;t You Reading This?</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/why-there-are-no-women-science" hreflang="en">Why There Are No Women in Science</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/careers" hreflang="en">careers</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/gender" hreflang="en">gender</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/motherhood" hreflang="en">motherhood</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/science" hreflang="en">Science</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/women-science" hreflang="en">women in science</a></div> </div> </div> <section> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-2308906" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1238451089"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>I've read Monosson's book very carefully, unlike the Nature reviewer who misattributed two of the essays to Monosson's daughters (Monosson has one son and one daughter, both of whom are far too young to be writing career essays. This is another point that the the Nature reviewer might have picked up on, had she read Monossonâs personal essays in the book at all carefully). </p> <p>Urry's review also suggests that she skipped over the sections of Monosson's book which extensively cite the academic literature on the impact of motherhood on science careers. I agree that motherhood is not the ONLY factor in the âleaky pipeline.â But the evidence is strong that it is a MAJOR factor. Anyone with an interest in these issues should be aware of the groundbreaking work by Mary Ann Mason at the University of Berkeley. Mason and her colleagues have been working on the âDo Babies Matterâ project, funded by the Alfred P. Sloan foundation. Working with data from the national Survey of Doctorate Recipients, Mason has found that yes, babies matter a great deal. When she examined a cohort of science Ph.D.s who received their doctorates between 1979-1999 (and who were still working in academia 12-14 years after their doctorates) she discovered that the women who had babies early in their careers were significantly less likely to achieve tenure than women who did not have babies. From the studied cohort:</p> <p>55% of women with âearly babiesâ (defined as born before or within five years of their mothersâ doctorates) had achieved tenure.</p> <p>Contrast with:</p> <p>65% of women who had no babies or âlateâ babies had achieved tenure.</p> <p>And</p> <p>77% of men who had early babies had achieved tenure. </p> <p>In fact, while women with children were less likely than women without children to achieve tenure, MEN with early children were actually slightly MORE likely than child-free men to achieve tenure.</p> <p>(See Masonâs presentation slides at <a href="http://www.aps.org/programs/women/workshops/gender-equity/upload/Mason_Mary_Ann_APS_Gender_Equity_Conference.pdf">http://www.aps.org/programs/women/workshops/gender-equity/upload/Mason_…</a></p> <p>Also available as a draft document at <a href="http://www.grad.berkeley.edu/deans/mason/Babies%20Matter1.pdf">http://www.grad.berkeley.edu/deans/mason/Babies%20Matter1.pdf</a> )</p> <p>Moreover, women with babies are much more likely than child-free women to âleakâ from the academic pipeline at far earlier stages, before ever entering a tenure-track position. Masonâs analysis of doctorates in all fields found that *women with babies are 29% less likely* than women without babies to ever enter a tenure-track position (âMarriage and Baby Blues: Redefining Gender Equityâ <a href="http://ucfamilyedge.berkeley.edu/marriagebabyblues.pdf">http://ucfamilyedge.berkeley.edu/marriagebabyblues.pdf</a>) </p> <p>Clearly, babies matter.</p> <p>Other factors matter, too, however, as Masonâs own work bears out. Itâs a complicated issue. Interestingly, family structures and pressures regardless of children appear to negatively affect women's careers and not men's careers (though only if you consider anything other than the traditional tenure-track at an R1 university to be a "negative.) Still, I was quite surprised by the negative review of Monossonâs âMotherhoodâ book in Nature. I quite agree with Monosson that the review greatly misrepresented her bookâand not just in the misattribution of essay authorship.</p> <p>I could go on. . . but Iâll save it for my own blog!</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=2308906&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="vchegc4HSOZALR1N4q6fUYthnORUs0GHDg9hmA1LFkI"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a rel="nofollow" href="http://beangirls.blogspot.com/" lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">bean-mom (not verified)</a> on 30 Mar 2009 <a href="https://www.scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/11622/feed#comment-2308906">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-2308907" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1238458956"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>I have read the book and I have enjoyed it. Some of the essays were quite depressing though, when women who wrote them described the discrimination they faced, whether it was for being a mother, or just for being a woman.</p> <p>The book is eye opening as to how it is to be a mother and work in science (in US). Some women have juggled their lives really well, while others have decided (or had no other option) to stay at home more and / or change to part-time opportunities.</p> <p>What is scary it that nowadays is is sometimes as difficult as it was in the 60s... Or sometimes it feels that in 60s it was easier, as women were still hopeful that it is all going to change soon and discrimination was going to vanish.</p> <p>There are some things in Urry's Nature review that I do not agree with.</p> <p>"[The book] contains few stories about women who have successfully combined traditional careers as science professors with traditional families."</p> <p>Maybe there are few such stories, because it is not the major option for women at the moment. I understood that this book was not focused on science professors only, but on all mothers who are scientists or work in science. Of this category, female science professors are a small fraction and this is represented by them contributing to small fraction of essays. </p> <p>Maybe Meg Urry does know many such women, but this does not mean that being a professor-mother is the most popular or easy option. Maybe since she knows many such professor-mother she would be able to compile and edit her own book drawn from essays from them? This would be a very welcome development!</p> <p>"More disturbing is the implication that in the absence of motherhood, women in academic science would have untroubled careers."</p> <p>Having read the book, I do not recall it being implied anywhere in it. Maybe it is an implication when someone thinks about motherhood issues in general, but it was never mentioned in the book that it would have been easier not to have children at all. None of the mothers who wrote the essays suggested anything along those lines, they were all very happy to be mothers.</p> <p>I got the feeling from some stories though that it would be sometimes be easier to be a man, but not a childless woman!</p> <p>In summary, I see Urry's review of the book as quite unfair. It was not meant to be career advise for aspiring young female professors, for such purpose FSP's Academeology would be indeed better suited. But the book fulfils the purpose it meant to fulfil, raising awareness of what it is to be BOTH a scientist and a mother. As a future mother who would also like to be an academic (but is not sure whether she would make it), I enjoyed "Motherhood, the Elephant in the Laboratory" thoroughly.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=2308907&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="MXDVY68qZSqT7vMZhRNQrhMu9T8DtzxJ_xzvwsIVVBk"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">DrL (not verified)</span> on 30 Mar 2009 <a href="https://www.scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/11622/feed#comment-2308907">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-2308908" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1238780606"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Wait, the Alfred P. Sloan foundation knows this and yet they only fund minorities in PhD programs, and not women with children?<br /> Not that I'm not thrilled for my Ronnie-bear (and not that he isn't secretly trying to find ways to funnel it to me, should it be needed), but he is <i>already</i> funded by an NIH R01 supplement for minorities.<br /> I know. I know. I sound like one of those horrible white males whining about minorities. But money has been terribly easy to come by for him; and I'm only quasi-guaranteed funded through this year...</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=2308908&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="fHgnGTAFs4uaFxwfIgpfPbJbdcrA8-j_9-tflF1SSyE"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">becca (not verified)</span> on 03 Apr 2009 <a href="https://www.scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/11622/feed#comment-2308908">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-2308909" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1239170242"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>I look forward to your review of the book. And from the comments it would be good to hear more stories of women that had successfully combined motherhood and science careers. In fact, I remember being at a women in science event a couple of years ago and hearing about a researcher who had two or three children and took 8 years out to be a full time mum. She returned and is now a distinguished professor - I'll have to find out who that was and keep you updated. Just to let you know I'm running a series of interviews with high profile female scientists and business women, covering topics just like this. If you'd like more info feel free to check out my blog: <a href="http://financialfreedomforwomeninscience.com/blog">http://financialfreedomforwomeninscience.com/blog</a></p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=2308909&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="hjG9QxHeXLyQqHDaIWBtxzo-4a3dVwM-NTz04AsmQAg"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a rel="nofollow" href="http://financialfreedomforwomeninscience.com/blog" lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Dionne (not verified)</a> on 08 Apr 2009 <a href="https://www.scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/11622/feed#comment-2308909">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-2308910" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1239210745"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>I would love to know who the researcher was who took time out for 8 years and is now a distinguished professor. In fact, I'd like to hear more stories like that, about women who have come up with alternative solutions to work and children (or other work-life balance issues) and made it through.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=2308910&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="nDvOgBOgL1-lrXIYp2dK6gNnVG09LDVXEK3H9RNcnmQ"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">kiwi (not verified)</span> on 08 Apr 2009 <a href="https://www.scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/11622/feed#comment-2308910">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> </section> <ul class="links inline list-inline"><li class="comment-forbidden"><a href="/user/login?destination=/thusspakezuska/2009/03/30/author-of-motherhood-the-eleph%23comment-form">Log in</a> to post comments</li></ul> Mon, 30 Mar 2009 19:05:50 +0000 thusspakezuska 115791 at https://www.scienceblogs.com