Monday, June 30, 2008

Science links, a new blog


Science linking today--


ABC news has an interesting story on the exodus of women from science careers in the private sector. (This is one of the latest discussions of a study from the Center for Work-Life Policy, showing that "52 percent of women in private-sector science and technology jobs drop out without returning, a vast majority between the ages of 35 to 44.")


For anyone concerned about balancing parenthood and a science career, I'd recommend checking out Motherhood: the Elephant in the Laboratory. I'm currently making my way through the book that gave name to the site (it's good!)


Finally, check out the new collaborative blog that Mad Hatter set up, The Alternative Scientist :
"The Alternative Scientist is a blog about alternative career options for scientists. There are many career paths for a scientist in addition to the traditional tenure track, and the goal of this blog is to provide a forum for open and honest discussions about the various possibilities."

Oh, and I'm a contributor to The Alternative Scientist, too...

29 comments:

Mad Hatter said...

That article makes me sad. But I agree with the commenters who pointed out that this is not specific to science.

But perhaps the relatively lower salaries in science research exacerbate the problem. For example, I have female friends who are lawyers and have as much difficulty balancing work and life as women scientists. But they make significantly higher salaries, which makes it easier to afford nannies/housekeepers, and they know that if they put in the hours for X number of years, they will very likely make partner. There is no such "security" for women scientists on the tenure track--even those who get tenured can still lose all their funding. Honestly, I can see why women in science eventually just get tired of the constant struggle.

Thanks for linking to The Alternative Scientist, by the way!

Candid Engineer said...

If you're interested, I posted on the same ABC article earlier this week.

The bean-mom said...

Yeah, that ABC article makes me sad, too.

And I think the relatively low pay scale in science is a HUGE factor in the decision of many women--especially mothers--to leave. A law school grad or MBA grad can afford housekeeping and a nanny to care for the kids while she works 60 hours a week. How many recent Ph.Ds can afford the same?

EmilyM said...

Hi Bean-mom thanks for posting (and for checking out Motherhood the Elephant.)

As a mom who chose what many would call an alternative career path (part-time, independent, toxicologist) I wonder if all those women truly ditched science or if they went their own way.

I appreciated your pointing out the Alternative Scientist because I think that those who do choose different paths (other than academia, full-time 60 industry or the like) still have a lot to offer science as a whole.

I tried to find the whole report - to see where they drew the boundaries for the innies and the outies but couldn't find a free copy!

Please feel free to add your thoughts comments to the Motherhood the Elephant site!

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That article makes me sad. But I agree with the commenters who pointed out that this is not specific to science.

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