We’re delighted to bring you a blogpost from Arun Verma, PhD student at University of Dundee (who has just submitted his thesis). Arun is also one of our past correspondents, who writes today as a guest blogger. Recent conversations with colleagues have kept bringing up this notion that academic research is a game to be played. (It's also something that … [Read more...] about Playing the research game
We hear so much about interdisciplinary research, about multidisciplinary studies, the importance of crossing disciplines and of collaboration. Does it ever make you stop and wonder: WHY? There has been lots of discussion of both the benefits and the career disadvantages of interdisciplinary research. These have always been themes of interest to … [Read more...] about How “inter” do you go in your research? A look at interdisciplinary research
We’re delighted to share this guest blogpost by Alex Conner, Senior Lecturer in Medical Sciences at the University of Birmingham. Alex addresses some of the themes that he spoke about at the Vitae Hangout on "Successful career planning for researchers" alongside our own Fiona Colligan. His advice is clear and his experienced perspectives are useful to early … [Read more...] about Well into your PhD? 5 helpful career planning topics
Let’s talk about mental health in academia. I know we sometimes don’t like to talk about it much. We’d rather talk about anything else than talk about mental health - but we need to talk. Recently, a study by Lavecque and colleagues showed that: One in two PhD students experiences psychological distress; one in three is at risk of a common psychiatric … [Read more...] about Mental Health in Academia: Lets talk about it.
We’re delighted to hear from a researcher who has wrestled with the post-phd limbo and come out the other side with an alt-ac career. Dr Rob Edwards has found a career that makes the most of the knowledge and skills he honed on his PhD – and builds new ones. Read on to find out how he found his alternative career path. In the beginning… I started my PhD … [Read more...] about My Alternative Academic (Alt-ac) Career – Guest blogger, Dr Rob Edwards
With the academic jobs market becoming more competitive and the pressure on the academic job market growing, it is not surprising that there are declining academic job prospects for doctoral graduates. Guest bloggers have written about it here on the piirus blog, such as a post looking at job advertisements by sector, by Doug Rocks-Macqueen. We know it's an … [Read more...] about Exploring alternative career pathways post-PhD: An online event
Our regular correspondent has a fascinating and inspiring interview story to share: read on for an example of life after PhD. You might not be inspired by academia, but can you get career satisfaction elsewhere? Last October, I wrote the blogpost ‘A PhD is a rosette, not a career path’ as part of our fabulous alternative career path series. I stressed … [Read more...] about Life after PhD: a satisfying career outside of academia?
Our correspondent in Brazil shares her experiences of relocation and offers helpful tips as well as motivational thoughts. I just recently moved to a new city again. We all know the drill of moving, right? Be it to another house in the same city, to another city or to another country: when thinking about moving we all think of work, work and more work. To … [Read more...] about Relocation, relocation, relocation : The art of moving
How many hours would you say you work a week? We've talked a lot about managing workloads lately on our blog, from imagining an alternative academic career to productivity hacks, but we all tiptoe around the topic of actual working time and the harsh realities of working flexibly. This topic holds a particular interest to me as my PhD is on flexible work, … [Read more...] about Working 5 to 9: how many hours are enough?
Researchers in popular culture have not only kicked arse and saved the world but have also worn brilliant cardigans Inspired by the 20th anniversary of the cultural touchstone that is Buffy the Vampire Slayer (and trust that the author says this in all seriousness), this post is dedicated to celebrate the awesomeness of research - and the awesomeness of … [Read more...] about A Critical Ka-Pow – Researchers in popular culture
One of the little pleasures I allow myself lately is reading business books. I love them. I love their cheerful optimism, their simple beliefs and motivational rhetoric. While kicking around campus, I would never have been seen dead reading Power Within by Tony Robbins, Key Person of Influence by Daniel Priestly or, my current read, You Are a Badass by Jen … [Read more...] about Mobility, Freedom and the 4-Hour Work Week
Our correspondent, Kathy McKay explains her approach to the need for flexibility of location that so often comes along with having academic career goals. In my last post, I spoke about my minimalist approach to possessions – the fewer things I own, the easier I find moving when a job is offered. I have learned exactly what is precious enough to move with … [Read more...] about Have academic career goals, will travel
Minimalism can be a strange beast. Right now, my life’s possessions consist of: 1. one small tortoiseshell cat; 2. one (admittedly squished) wardrobe’s worth of clothes; 3. four blankets; and, 4. eight boxes that I can pick up, mostly filled with books, art, and all my cake tins. You know – the vital things to life. I used … [Read more...] about The Academic Art of Minimalism
Our in-depth interview with full time consultant and entrepreneur, Rob Johnson continues. Last week we focused on the early days of creating a consultancy company. This week, we learn more about the ingredients for success in this sector. - You often work with other freelancers and indeed with academic consultants. Can you describe the ideal … [Read more...] about Consultancy reflections: An interview with Rob Johnson, founder of Research Consulting, Part 2
We’re very pleased to be able to feature an interview with full time consultant and entrepreneur, Rob Johnson. His interview is so full of useful reflections for anyone considering working as an academic consultant that I’ve split it into two parts. This week, the focus is on starting out. - You were once an employee at a University but have now set … [Read more...] about Creating a company: An interview with Rob Johnson, founder of Research Consulting, Part 1