Najpopularnejši članek na The Washington Post je danes članek z naslovom “Armed with PhDs, scientists fail to find jobs” (Oboroženi z doktorati znansteniki ne najdejo služb).
Zapisano bo seveda znano vsem, ki delajo v akademski sferi – da je namreč produkcija doktorantov veliko večja, kot je potem število služb. Nekoliko presenetljivo, vsaj zame, je bil podatek, kako slaba je situacija tudi izven akademskega sveta. Da se je namreč, vsaj v ZDA, v zadnjem desetletju število raziskovalnih pozicij v industriji drastično zmanjšalo.
…“There have been many predictions of [science] labor shortages and . . . robust job growth,” said Jim Austin, editor of the online magazine ScienceCareers. “And yet, it seems awfully hard for people to find a job. Anyone who goes into science expecting employers to clamor for their services will be deeply disappointed.”
One big driver of that trend: Traditional academic jobs are scarcer than ever. Once a primary career path, only 14 percent of those with a PhD in biology and the life sciences now land a coveted academic position within five years, according to a 2009 NSF survey. That figure has been steadily declining since the 1970s, said Paula Stephan, an economist at Georgia State University who studies the scientific workforce. The reason: The supply of scientists has grown far faster than the number of academic positions.
….But a decade of slash-and-burn mergers; stagnating profit; exporting of jobs to India, China and Europe; and declining investment in research and development have dramatically shrunk the U.S. drug industry, with research positions taking heavy hits.
Since 2000, U.S. drug firms have slashed 300,000 jobs, according to an analysis by consulting firm Challenger, Gray & Christmas….
…Although the overall unemployment rate of chemists and other scientists is much lower than the national average, those figures mask an open secret: Many scientists work outside their chosen field.
“They’ll be employed in something,” said Michael S. Teitelbaum, a senior adviser to the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation who studies the scientific workforce. “But they go and do other things because they can’t find the position they spent their 20s preparing for.”….