Charting a Course for a Successful Research Career
Jay Katzen - Managing Director, Academic & Government Products, Elsevier, has praised the booklet as follows:
Being a researcher today is a bit of a dichotomy. On one hand, researchers now have easier and quicker access to an unprecedented amount of information from around the world, through tools such as Elsevier’s Scopus and ScienceDirect databases. Global communications technology allows collaboration on the individual, national, and international levels like never before, which facilitates the research process as a whole from the funding stages through discovery and publication. On the other hand, they are working in the most competitive research environment ever known. Grant applications are increasing, funding opportunities are decreasing, and funding bodies are tightening the reins around their requirements and expected outcomes. The dichotomy is that researchers have better, broader, and faster access to more information and technology than at any other time in history, yet the funds necessary to tap into these resources and fulfill the full promise of research are lean and growing leaner.
Early career researchers are especially affected by this dichotomy. Having learned their research skills and earned their Ph.D.s in this new age, they are keenly aware of its potential. However, without the benefit of years of experience under their belt they are often at a disadvantage when applying for grants. Though they are new in the field and full of fresh perspectives, funding bodies are often hesitant to award grants to junior researchers without the presence of senior researchers on their teams. With more experience comes more responsibility, which can leave veteran researchers little time, incentive, or energy to guide their novice peers. Without funding, early career researchers are at risk of reducing their productivity and contributions. Without mentoring and guidance, they may take unnecessary career detours.
Nations, governments, industry, and academia all have a responsibility to support our early career researchers. Ultimately, we at Elsevier see our role as being a solutions provider - providing the tools that let these researchers share their knowledge with the research community, publish their works and validate their results, evaluate the work of others’, find funding and potential collaborators, and determine their research path as well as the impact of their work. But first and foremost, a plan for building a successful research career must be in place. Professor Johnson’s guide provides the building blocks essential to a strong foundation.
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