I will no longer put up with low pay, unstable contracts and the requirement to be available at all times

  • Anonymous academic
  • , Thursday 1 May 2014 08.56 EDT

In a few weeks, I will be leaving my career in academic research . The pleasure of contributing to scientific knowledge has disappeared and I am overworked and under-compensated with no semblance of a work-life balance. The cons of academia now far outweigh the pros, so I am walking away.

I am currently working as a postdoc, which is the purgatory between finishing a PhD and obtaining a long-term fellowship or permanent position. According to the 2013 Careers in research online survey (Cros) , 77% of research staff are on temporary, fixed-term contracts, and 87% of these are for less than three years.

The expectation is that you move institutions after one or two contracts. I am currently working as a part of a large physics collaboration and am one-and-a-half years into my first postdoc. I will be told to leave and find another one in two years.

http://www.theguardian.com/ higher-education-network/blog/ 2014/may/01/academic- anonymous-leaving-academia