Friday, March 30, 2012

Has greed swamped learning?

In his column in The Washington Post, Robert McCartney asks, "Has greed swamped learning as the top priority for America’s institutions of higher education?"

Monday, March 19, 2012

How Economics Shapes Science

An interview with Paula Stephan, the author of How Economics Shapes Science, which discusses the economic and other incentives of academic researchers. Among the items covered in the interview:
The evidence is overwhelming that in certain fields — especially in the biomedical sciences — we produce more Ph.D.s than there are research or teaching jobs. This imbalance is caused by the fact that principal investigators staff their labs with postdocs and graduate students, not permanent staff scientists. Faculty like the model: graduate students and postdocs have new, fresh ideas; they are also inexpensive and they are temporary. But unless the number of new jobs grows quickly enough to absorb the newly trained, (which it hasn’t for many years), this system of staffing produces many more Ph.D.s than the job market can absorb. That’s why I call it a pyramid scheme.

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

A Guide to Journal Publication

According to the web site,
The purpose ... is to aggregate advice and best practices from accomplished engineering academics that will assist both doctoral students and junior faculty members achieve success in journal publication.
Hat tip: Alice Smith.