Friday, May 24, 2013

Podcast: Beth Halford on the plight (and joys) of being a postdoc

Beth Halford and I sat down to have a quick chat about the life of postdocs, based on her really interesting article in this week's C&EN. It was really fun and the edited recording is below:


0:00 - 2:00: What's been the background of postdocs?
4:30: The happiness of postdocs
6:30: The postdocs that Beth knew
7:00: Crowdfunding a postdoc (CJ grossly underestimates the cost of a FTE)
8:55: PIs and their postdocs
9:50: Should we pay postdocs more? Beth on Paula Stephan
11:00: $16/hour
12:00: Why do a postdoc?
13:30: The finances of postdocs
15:11: Jessica Breen's cogent comments on delaying life milestones?
17:15: Are postdocs really broader?
19:45: The postdoc arms race
22:17: The longest postdoc you've heard of
23:55: When will the arms race be over?
27:55: What should postdocs do about getting a job?

Thanks to Beth for a great conversation!


  1. Shame no bitter postdocs contacted her. I was too happy with my postdoc as well. Mostly with getting paid over 70K a year + pension... though, that's all over now.

  2. Thanks for doing these podcasts. I really enjoy them.