Category Archives: Early Career Academia

Whiteness and the Academy

Let’s start with the observation that I’m ridiculously white. The everyday response to this is to look at me and say, “duh, obviously!”. But people who think about/study race might look at me and say, “duh, obviously!” but mean it … Continue reading

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The Great University Covid Regression?

The UK, Late April 2020 ‘Pre-covid’ life in the UK almost feels like an aeon ago, but we’re only six weeks into it. At the end of February I was in London, co-hosting an event with colleagues, and was still … Continue reading

Posted in Access to Uni, Early Career Academia, Employability, International Students, Rankings, Student Loans, Teaching in HE, Tuition Fees | 2 Comments

Lost in Space – the unsettlement of interdisciplinarity 

  I’ve been feeling increasingly rootless over the past few months, but in a weirdly good way. Well, mostly good. I’m bringing in loads of new ideas to my work, which is intellectually stimulating but also quite tricky as the … Continue reading

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The Multiple Shitnesses of the ECR Job Market

Over about 18 months, I looked into but didn’t apply for about 80 jobs, enquired about – but didn’t apply for – 20, applied for 15, was shortlisted for five, and got one. Whether I was shortlisted or not was … Continue reading

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Moving on…to the Promised Land? 

A few months ago I wrote about being anxious due to having, I felt, too little space for intellectual development. It’s not that I was standing still, but rather that I was developing more slowly than I could, or than I wanted … Continue reading

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A University Carol

Stave One Professor Ben Ceerzee-Gooser was working late, as usual, poring over the data of his latest set of graphene experiments. He was alone in the lab, having (generously, he thought) given his latest post-doc, Barb Cottich, the afternoon off … Continue reading

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The Hero at the Helm

  Describing the VC’s state of mind as incandescently apoplectic would have been an understatement. He stalked back through the door of his wood-panelled office, pushed it quietly closed, then shut his eyes and clenched his fists before silently screaming … Continue reading

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University People…

Higher education is filled with real people. Let’s meet some of them… The Vice Chancellor The Emeritus Professor The Über-successful Scientist (aka ‘A University Carol’) The University Data Manager The Misanthropic Doctoral Student The Reluctant Union-ist The Kingmaker (This is … Continue reading

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The Misanthropic Doctoral Student

Aubrey was, as usual, sitting by himself at the back of the room,  paying less than half attention. He was pretending to write notes on the presentation but was actually drafting the outline of an incisive new paper on Isambard … Continue reading

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Fear of Being Left Behind – the Post-92 Blues?

Another academic year draws to a close, and as September approaches, the cycle of personal and academic renewal and ageing (!) begins afresh. I’m struck by a few things, one of which is that the summer always feels like – … Continue reading

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