A prediction: many postdocs will face higher taxes in the years to come. Why? A recent supreme court ruling on the tax status of a similar group: medical residents. Some postdocs are not required pay social security taxes because their fellowships are not classified as compensation (it’s an issue I don’t pretend to understand well, … read more
Want to see your research have a real impact? One great way to do so is to get involved in turning your work into a product. Postdocs, it seems, are not so interested in doing so. George Mason professor Edmund Zolnik recently surveyed DC metro area postdocs about their interest in entrepreneurial careers. in a … read more
Cue the Billy Bragg. The University of California’s postdocs have unionized. The unionization of the University of Connecticut’s postdocs seems to have gone smoothly. I’ll be curious to hear what the ultimate contract will look like for the University of California. There’s more about the union here.
There’s an interesting piece in Slate this week about lab safety (or the lack thereof) in academic settings relative to their corporate counterparts. The author may be familiar to some – Beryl Lieff Benderly writes for Science’s Next Wave. The article describes an awful chem lab accident at UCLA and then goes on to point … read more
I have been paying a fair amount of attention to the NIH meltdown because of the time I spent up at NBER, but not a whole lot to current goings on in the physical sciences. This interesting graph from the AIP tells me that there are some problems there, too. The percentage of new physics … read more
Science this week has a piece entitled “POSTDOCTORAL TRAINING: NSF, NIH Emphasize the Importance of Mentoring” that talks about the mentoring plan requirement for NSF-funded postdocs in the America COMPETES act and a new statement on mentoring from NIH: …supervisors must also hold up their end of the bargain by being good mentors. That’s what … read more
I’ve just taken a look at the Senate’s hefty bill to reauthorize the NSF, S 761. Like the House equivalent, there are some good and interesting things in the bill. There is a lot of new money for graduate fellowships: IGERT – Increased funding to the IGERT program, like in the House bill. This would … read more
This past weekend I spoke at a workshop at the FASEB meeting on how to manage postdocs in the lab. I go to a lot of these things, but this one seemed particularly promising. People have complained for years (maybe even decades by now) about the quality of mentoring, or lack thereof, for postdocs and … read more