Recent readings

Dean Lee MBIDLE at LLUVM.BITNET
Mon Aug 16 16:39:33 EST 1993


The July 26 issue of The Scientist has an intriguing review of a recently
published paper (Social Forces 71(1):159-78) which has some bearing on the
recent discussion of whether promotion/advancement committees should look at
quality vs quantity of publications, and also sheds some light on the recent
complaints about women not posting often enough on the Internet.  This paper
analyzed the publication and citation records of 550 men and 600 women who got
their PhD degrees between 1950 and 1963 (i.e., overall careers of current
"senior" investigators).  It seems that in the beginning of their carreers, men
and women publish approximately the same number of papers, but by the 15th or
20th year of their carreers, men publish about 60% more articles per year than
the women.  The great finding of this paper, though, is that they find that the
in number of citations, there is less that a 5% difference between men and
women, despite the difference in number of papers.  This seems to *strongly*
suggest that women are much better able to wait and publish meaningful papers
from their data, rather than dissecting their work into peices of 1 MPU each
(Minimum Publishible Unit) in an effort to have the longest publication list
possible when tenure comes up.  I would venture to guess that the same
principle applies to the Internet...

The summer issue of the Task Force Quarterly (by american medical student
association) has the following announcement, p.71:

"IT'S ABOUT TIME"
The office of women's health at NIH is allocating $1 million as administrative
supplements to encourage and enable Principle Investigators to support and
mentor scientists who have taken time off to attend to family needs.

Does anyone have any additional informaition?

Dean Lee
Microbiology Dept.
LLU
mbidle at lluvm.bitnet






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