Tribe of Science

Adventures in Ethics and Science

Category archives for Tribe of Science

Economic recovery has not yet made its presence felt at public universities in California. (Indeed, at least in the California State University system, all things budgetary are going to be significantly worse in the next academic year, not better.) This means it’s not a great time for purveyors of electronic journals to present academic libraries…

I want to apologize for the infrequency of my posting lately. Much of it can be laid at the feet of end-of-term grading, although today I’ve been occupied with a meeting of scientists at different career stages to which I was invited to speak about some topics I discuss here. (More about that later.) June…

DrugMonkey has a poll up asking for reader reports of the science career advice they have gotten firsthand. Here’s the framing of the poll: It boils down to what I see as traditional scientific career counselling to the effect that there is something wrong or inadvisable about staying in the same geographical location or University…

From the last poll you probably guessed that this one was coming. I expect my graduate students to be working:Market Research I’ll be interested to see whether there’s any correspondence between the hours demanded by PIs who read this blog and the hours demanded of graduate students who read this blog. Once again, feel free…

The issue came up in my “Ethics in Science” class today, so I figured it was worth mounting a quick (and obviously unscientific) poll: My graduate advisor expects or requires me to work:survey software Feel free to discuss in the comments.

Yesterday in my “Ethics in Science” class, we were discussing mentoring. Near the end of the class meeting, I noted that scientists in training have a resource nowadays that just wasn’t available during my misspent scientific youth (back in the last millennium): the blogosphere. What does the blogosphere have to do with mentoring?

In recent days, there have been discussions of conditions for postdoctoral fellows, and about the ways that these conditions might make it challenging to tackle the problem of the “leaky pipeline” for women in science. For example, in comments at DrugMonkey’s blog, bsci opines:

Over at the DrugMonkey blog, PhysioProf noted that a push to increase NIH postdoctoral fellowship stipend levels by 6% may have the effect of reducing the number of postdoctoral positions available. To this, the postdoctoral masses responded with something along the lines of, “Hey, it’s possible that there are too damn many postdocs already (and…

A reader writes: I was in a PhD program in materials science, in a group that did biomedical research (biomaterials end of the field) and was appalled at the level of misconduct I saw. Later, I entered an MD program. I witnessed some of the ugliest effects of ambition in the lab there. Do you…

You don’t have to look far to find mutterings about the peer review system, especially about the ways in which anonymous reviewers might hold up your paper or harm your career. On the other hand, there are plenty of champions of the status quo who argue that anonymous peer review is the essential mechanism by…