Tackling the problems facing PhDs without permanent jobs (Hortensii)

Hortensii, the group dedicated to improving the situation for PhDs without permanent academic jobs, has registered its first success: the University of Manchester held a conference at which the organizer produced name tags without institutional affiliations out of consideration for the feelings of unaffiliated attendees. He informs us that he did this as a result of our survey. No-one reported having difficulties with those name tags, perhaps in part because a complete list of attendees’ e-mail addresses was included in the conference pack and therefore affiliations were not necessary for contact purposes. Thank you Nigel Vincent!

Now we would be the first to admit that as successes go this one is small. But it’s a step in the right direction, and every step counts: the only way we can make big changes is via lots of little changes. So we look forward to hearing about the next success: when you change something about academia, even a little thing, do tell us, so we can tell the world that change is possible and thereby encourage others to make more changes.

In other news, we have two more documents on this site, one a list of things employed academics can do to help and one an information sheet for prospective PhD students. We know the latter document is appalling, and we apologize for that, but we felt we had to do it because of the strong support for making sure that prospective PhD students know the truth about the job market. We also, ahem, have made some corrections to the original documents, which contained a few mistakes. Many apologies to all about those mistakes, and MANY thanks to the people who pointed them out! Please keep the corrections coming if you spot more mistakes: we know that having incorrect information on this site is highly undesirable, and we’ve made a big effort to get things right, so we really welcome help in that direction.

About Ryan C. Fowler

Ryan is a curricular fellow at the Center for Hellenic Studies in Washington D.C. He also teaches at Franklin and Marshall College and Lancaster Theological Seminary.
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