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bmartin at utmem1.utmem.edu bmartin at utmem1.utmem.edu
Wed Nov 26 12:07:00 EST 1997


In article <34730FF2.338D at nospamsalk.edu>, forsburg at nospamsalk.edu wrote:

> I do wonder whether the positive reinforcement, especially
> at higher levels, is gender specific.  I know I see some (male)
> colleagues get frequent pats on the back, probably because they
> have networked well.  But have they networked well because 
> they are men?  Do senior faculty (who are predominantly male)
> find it easier to mentor male juniors than female?  
> These political interactions are essential for career
> advancement.  Are they gender neutral?   

At my place, there is little positive reinforcement from senior male
faculty for either male or female Asst Profs.  My Ph.D. mentor (male; 60
yrs old) was fantastic at giving positive support, privately and publicly,
to female and male students, postdocs, and younger faculty.

> Science has become unnecessarily hypercritical.  WHen was the 
> last time you read a nice review of your grant or your paper? 
> Reviewers seem to feel the need to criticize SOMETHING, leading
> to unnecessary nitpicks.  Unfortunately, they 
> seem to be constitutively unable to say, This was a nice piece
> of work and should be published/funded/whatever.  Along with
> this chronic negativity comes a lack of civility.

I agree that this is more frequently happening.  I also find that
reviewers do not do their homework on papers in areas slightly different
from their own.  Reviewers rely more heavily on current dogma without
taking the time to assess the reliability of the data.

B. Martin



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