lack of publications


Can anyone offer me any advice, I have been working as a postdoc for 9 months, research assistant for a year before that, however do no have any publications as yet, I have several which will be published in the next 6 months, and I am trying to publish PhD data, which was negative, however I finding it hard to get another postdoc because of this, does anyone have similar experiences, or advice?! thanks!


Hi Scaredgirl.
Well, I am in a similar situation and can not be very helpful but just wanted to give you some courage. Actually, before logging in this forum I thought I am the only one miserable scientist in the world.
So, let`s think practically........
The obvious think that we can do is to put some money aside to have what to live with until the moment when our papers will be published - it is supposed that by this time we will be unemployed.
But, we can still apply for positions (as young scientists) and to include the titles of the future as being ''currently under opponent evaluation''. I know, this is very naive and desperate and I don`t know if somebody does it but we may try. It shows at least the we have been working hardly. Do you think that the post doc committees do not know how difficult is to publish something? I am sure they also know that publishing of every one work requires a technical time, that not everybody has had the good luck to work on fascinating field and having amazing results (like me and probably you) - we will not lose anything if we just try.

Good luck!!!


I think that PhD students and postdocs views of publications are somewhat over the top, everyone has the idea of 'publish or perish' in their head but from what I have seen first hand (I'm currently looking for postdoc positions myself) and a number of friends who have got positions it seems the skills you have developed in your research career are more important. I think academics would prefer someone who can do what they want who has no publications than someone with little or no experience and alot of publications.

I have a decent number of publications (10 from my PhD and 1.5 years as a postdoc) but have lost out on jobs to people with less publications but a little more experience. A friend of mine who has only 3 publications from his PhD and 4 years as a postdoc has recently got a fellowship because he had experience building equipment that someone wanted. So don't think of publications as the be all and end all, focus on your skills and try to get some articles published (or at least submitted) in the next few months. Good luck with your job search!


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