How long should someone stay as a postdoc anywhere?
Distribution of resources
I was recently in China for a couple of weeks visiting different scientific institutions. I definitely learned a lot about a part of the world blending the oldest traditions and the greatest potential to impact humanity’s future.
Scientific journals only want to be fed with new physical insights. But how many of those may scientists spawn in their careers? It’s getting hard to feed those beasts.
Quantitative evaluation of scientific production isn’t disrupting science. On the contrary, it’s the best we can do. The alternative is to give in to bias and prejudice.
Probabilities and statistics, these are the right glasses to see the world. They protect us from our cognitive biases. But we should be careful. Although numbers don’t lie, people do; and often to themselves.
Discrimination against women is a serious issue everywhere, including academia. But gender policies are starting to punish the sons for the errors of their fathers. Do we really want to go in this way?
Papers are symbolic coins that scientists use in exchange for resources. It is not a bad system, but inflation is corroding paper’s exchanging power, leading to aggressive and unethical forms of symbolic-capital accumulation. We should start to think of ways… Read More ›