In academic circles it's common to hear junior folks on the TT to be advised to have a back up plan in their back pocket. You know, just in case. Not that they'll need it of course. But it's good to have one. Right?
What about the tenured/not-so-junior?
An interesting study of publications in cardiovascular journals is coming out soon in the journal Circulation. The abstract seems to tell the story. In the decade 1997-2007 15.6% of the publications had zero citations after five years. Not even self-cites. 46.0% were considered "poorly cited" (defined as having ≤5 cites).
Is there any reason to believe these numbers wouldn't apply to all biomedical science beyond "my sub-field is special"?
This isn't just about those who are mid-career PI's now. These are issues those that follow will inherit.
Unless we do something to fix the system.
I don't care who you are. Grad student or Nobelist. In presentations, clarity trumps quantity, and often even quality, of data.
Every. Single. Time.
If you're publishing multiple (closely-related or not) reviews per year, you're doing it wrong.
I have been on the editorial board of a middling journal (IF ~4) for some years now. I get sent a lot of the manuscripts that are in my sub-sub-field. My job is to obtain reviews and make a decision as to the fate of each of these manuscripts. It's become apparent to me that there is a group of reviewers who all display the same phenotype when it comes to their reviews. They all i) are quick to agree to review manuscripts in our common sub-sub-field, ii) submit their reviews on time, and iii) will recommend acceptance or minor revisions for all manuscripts. All.
This journal rejects ~70% of all submissions.* ~40% are desk rejects so ~50% of all manuscripts sent out for review are rejected.
Did I mention that this bloc of reviewers are all strongly linked to one particular well-known member of our sub-sub-field? Former trainees, co-authors etc. Given that pretty much none of the manuscripts they've reviewed for me in the past have authors from within the group, I doubt this is a organized ring of shady reviewers. In fact, having interacted with some of them I suspect this is more a misguided** attempt to raise the profile of the sub-sub-field promoted by Dr. Well-Known.
I don't use these reviewers anymore.
* Yes, there really is that much crap being submitted even to middling journals.
** "Misguided" is somewhat euphemistic.
You know how some publisher's web sites let you download a pdf of a paper with supplementary material included (usually after more clicks than necessary)? And of course others don't? Why isn't the combined paper + supplementary material the default?*
* Let's set aside the asinine nature of supplementary material for the sake of this discussion.
Following DrugMonkey's lead on this meme...
It's been a fairly sparse year for the blogging here. Life and all that. But here's what I have:
January: Over the years I've been involved in quite a few collaborations of various sorts.
February: So PLoS has this new data sharing policy.
March: A number of recent happenings (to name just two the PLoS data sharing mandate and tweets that led to @MyTChondria's guest post over at DrugMonkey's joint) have got me thinking...
April: NSF is big on promoting diversity.
May: Nada. Zip. Nothing blogged.
June: People who drive in the left lane on the highway at or below the speed of people driving in the right lane.
July: There's a lot of advice that can be given on surviving your tenure track years.
August: When writing a manuscript you should be writing for the audience you want to reach.
September: Nada. Zip. Nothing blogged.
October: I'm sure many of you are quite aware of the ongoing kerfuffle surrounding the ASBMB's president and his recent comments.
November: NSF's review process determines which research has the greatest potential.
December: By special request from Twitter's favorite kitten...
By special request from Twitter's favorite kitten...
So, what do you all hate about the holidays in academia?
The kitten can get us started: