Category Archives: Managing an academic career

Do this before you say yes to anything

You just got asked to do something new. It might be to join an on-campus committee, or to talk at a fancy university. It might be a one-off request to review a paper, write a letter of recommendation, or serve … Continue reading

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Do not fix the English when you review a manuscript for a journal

How easy it is to go into edit mode when you read a manuscript. After all, once you fix the English, the science is easier to understand. But then you might start wanting to move paragraphs around and get sucked … Continue reading

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Wissenschaftskolleg: It’s not just time to write, it is connections with fabulous novelists, thoughtful former politicians, historians, and scientists

Ever since I got to the Wissenschaftskolleg in Berlin, I have been trying to understand  what I can offer it and what it can offer me. This is the script: I come here for 10 months, take no more than … Continue reading

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What does a professor or a postdoc do at an advanced study institute?

We are about to start 10 months at the renowned Wissenschaftskolleg zu Berlin, a place where academics go to concentrate on their research and to find inspiration across the academy. You might think you have to be advanced yourself to … Continue reading

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What is your anxiety telling you?

Megan Duffy had a thoughtful post on not inducing anxiety in others. She mentioned the specific case of reducing anxiety in others by being really clear. Instead of saying something like meet me Thursday, say why. I agree that getting … Continue reading

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How many hours a week can you work on research?

What are my colleagues around the world doing on this Sunday, a brilliantly sunny February day too warm for a jacket in St. Louis? Are they out hiking, bird watching, or cooking a delicious meal? Are they playing with their … Continue reading

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What to do if your research stops being fun for you?

Meghan Duffy wrote a really thoughtful piece on science with a baby. She had lots of good points about the challenges of getting enough sleep, of feeding a baby, and that you can’t really take off from running your lab … Continue reading

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