14 April 2015

A New Study on Career Pathways for PhDs in Science

Richard Fienberg

Richard Fienberg American Astronomical Society (AAS)

This message is posted on behalf of Melanie V. Sinche of Harvard Law School:

While the number of PhDs conferred in the US has increased over the past several decades, the number of tenure-track faculty positions has remained flat. Recent studies have illuminated the change in career decisions of some PhDs over time, but none has described or visualized a career map detailing where recent PhDs are currently employed.

The study “Identifying Career Pathways for PhDs in Science” will endeavor to accomplish this visual representation by collecting current employment data from PhDs who have studied, worked, or trained in the US and received a doctorate in the last 10 years. The study author and administrator is Melanie Sinche, Senior Research Associate in the Labor and Worklife Program at Harvard Law School.

If you have received a PhD in any of the physical, life, engineering, computational, or social sciences between 2004 and 2014 from any institution worldwide and have ever studied, worked, or trained in the United States, you are invited to participate in the study by completing the online survey at http://goo.gl/my1SfL

The survey takes approximately 15 minutes to complete and includes questions about career interests, activities, current employment, and motivations for choosing your career. At the end of the survey, you will be invited to participate in a drawing for one of five $100 gift cards to Amazon.com. Responses to this optional drawing will not be linked in any way to the Career Pathways survey.

Participation in this study is entirely voluntary. The study has been approved by the Committee on the Use of Human Subjects at Harvard University (IRB #15-0063). To protect the privacy of participants, responses to the Career Pathways survey will be encrypted and kept on a password-protected, encrypted computer at all times. Please contact Melanie Sinche with any questions.

Thank you in advance for participating, and please do share the survey link with all individuals and/or groups who might meet the criteria above. The study's goal is to gather as many responses as possible from recent PhDs to develop a careers map that is truly comprehensive.