postdoc disparity

Sabine Dippel sabine at hlrz28.zam.kfa-juelich.de
Wed Aug 13 02:47:49 EST 1997


Nearly everyone refers to post-docs as a "period of training," 
which I find somewhat confusing. Aren't you supposed to have sort 
of finished your education after approximately 10 years in College
and grad school? Maybe this is my European point of view, but here
actually grad students are being treated as people who already have
a degree (though I admit this degree is comparable to a Masters, 
and sure, it is agreed that they still need _some_ training), and thus
have at least some capability of judgement concerning their work. 

The point is that whatever the reason post-docs are paid so little,
I don't think "them still needing training" should be a reason --
doing research _is_ the thing you are trained for if you got a 
PhD. If industry (for which you are not so well-prepared) is willing
to pay more, how can universities still argue that they can't pay 
much because you still need more training?

(I'm not saying I don't understand why it is done. Anybody likes
to get people to work for him/her as cheaply as possible...)

My two cents,

Sabine

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