Mitchell scholarship body claims ‘misleading’, says Rhodes

Posted in Fees, access and admissions on June 3rd, 2019 by steve

Ireland“The head of the Rhodes scholarship programme has dismissed as ‘misleading’ claims by the US-Ireland Alliance that a majority of students choose its scholarship instead. The Mitchell scholarship, which is managed by Trina Vargo, the head of the US-Ireland Alliance, was established almost 20 years ago and named after Senator George Mitchell …” (more)

[Suzanne Lynch, Irish Times, 3 June]

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‘Academe’s Extinction Event’

Posted in Research on May 11th, 2019 by steve

“All at once it hit me: a shudder. I’d been doing fine all day – merrily, even. Fresh off the bus to downtown Chicago, eased by a steady titration since breakfast of Maker’s Mark, I’d fairly danced down Wacker Drive, rolling suitcase in tow. I had this …” (more)

[Andrew Kay, Chronicle of Higher Education, 10 May]

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Worried About the Future of the Monograph? So Are Publishers

Posted in Research on April 10th, 2019 by steve

“‘Publish or perish’ used to apply purely to faculty members, but in recent years it also has turned into a question facing academic presses – one that has particular relevance for graduate students and first-book authors …” (more)

[Leonard Cassuto, Chronicle of Higher Education, 2 April]

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Elsevier’s Presence on Campuses Spans More Than Journals. That Has Some Scholars Worried.

Posted in Research on April 3rd, 2019 by steve

“On a recent panel on challenges to the future of teaching and research, Colleen Lyon outlined what was, to her, a ‘dangerous’ dynamic in the world of academic publishing. Lyon, a librarian of scholarly communications at the University of Texas at Austin, listed scholarly-publishing tools that had been acquired by the journal publishing giant Elsevier …” (more)

[Lindsay Ellis, Chronicle of Higher Education, 3 April]

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Yale Becomes First University to Rescind Admission for Student in College Fraud Scandal

Posted in Fees, access and admissions, Legal issues on March 26th, 2019 by steve

“Yale University has rescinded the admission of a student who was accepted as part of the massive college cheating scandal revealed by the Department of Justice earlier in March. Federal prosecutors charged 50 people for participating in the scheme, which employed bribery, exam cheating and unearned athletic endorsements to help get applicants into prestigious colleges …” (more)

[Ciara Nugent, Time, 26 March]


Almost Half of Female US Economists Report Sex Discrimination

Posted in Research on March 19th, 2019 by steve

“Almost half of female economists have experienced gender discrimination, according to an American Economic Association survey that also included hundreds of reports of assault and harassment. 48% of women reported unfair discrimination based on sex and 22% experienced bias for their marital status or caregiving responsibilities …” (more)

[Jeff Kearns, Bloomberg, 18 March]

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We Asked 20 Elite-College Admissions Deans About the Bribery Scandal. Here’s What They Said.

Posted in Fees, access and admissions, Legal issues on March 19th, 2019 by steve

“Yale University, the University of Pennsylvania, and Dartmouth College each pledged to increase oversight of athletics recruiting in light of an elaborate bribery scheme in college admissions that brought the indictments last week of 11 employees at eight universities, along with more than two dozen parents …” (more)

[Lindsay Ellis, Chronicle of Higher Education, 18 March]


Fresh hope visa scheme will be extended to Irish

Posted in Governance and administration on March 15th, 2019 by steve

Ireland“There is renewed hope that a special US visa scheme will be extended to Irish citizens who want to work in the US. Irish-American congressman Richard Neal is set to reintroduce a bill that could see around 5,000 work visas made available to Irish people under the E3 programme …” (more)

[Independent, 15 March]

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Higher Education and the Illusion of Meritocracy

Posted in Fees, access and admissions, Governance and administration on March 14th, 2019 by steve

“The recently revealed admissions scandal seems to have it all: Three Stooges levels of ineptitude, crude Photoshops, six-figure payoffs, corrupt coaches, and a cadre of low-level celebrities for good measure. But those who see this scandal as anything other than a moment of levity are missing the forest for the trees …” (more)

[Jason England, Chronicle of Higher Education, 13 March]


Clintons say vendetta claim in book ‘patently false’

Posted in Fees, access and admissions on March 6th, 2019 by steve

Ireland“Bill and Hillary Clinton have dismissed allegations in a new book on the Ireland-US relationship that funding was cut for scholarship programme because of a personal vendetta against the scheme’s founder. Representatives for the Clintons hit back on Tuesday at a series of claims …” (more)

[Suzanne Lynch, Irish Times, 5 March]

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Clintons deny cutting Irish scholarship funding

Posted in Fees, access and admissions on March 5th, 2019 by steve

Ireland“Bill and Hillary Clinton have denied claims contained in a new book that they tried to get a scholarship to Ireland for a boyfriend of their daughter Chelsea and deny cutting funding to the scholarship programme to punish the organiser …” (more)

[RTÉ News, 5 March]

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Can Economics Fix Its Gender-Imbalance Problem? It’ll Take More Than Research, Women Say

Posted in Governance and administration on January 14th, 2019 by steve

“Erin K Fletcher, an economist with the global, nonprofit health-and-education organization Results for Development, feels so strongly about her field’s problem with sexism that she left academe. Fletcher was one of many women who spoke out last week at the American Economic Association’s annual meeting, in Atlanta …” (more)

[Lily Jackson, Chronicle of Higher Education, 11 January]

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Smurfit school handed €9m by US Ireland fund

Posted in Governance and administration on January 11th, 2019 by steve

Ireland“The UCD Michael Smurfit Graduate Business School was the big winner in the $29.47m donated to 352 organisations and projects here and across the world by the American Ireland Funds (AIF) in 2017 …” (more)

[Gordon Deegan, Independent, 11 January]

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Female Economists Push Their Field Toward a #MeToo Reckoning

Posted in Governance and administration on January 11th, 2019 by steve

“The economics profession is facing a mounting crisis of sexual harassment, discrimination and bullying that women in the field say has pushed many of them to the sidelines – or out of the field entirely. Those issues took center stage at the American Economic Association’s annual meeting …” (more)

[Ben Casselman and Jim Tankersley, New York Times, 10 January]

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University ‘teaching’ then and now: Part 2

Posted in Teaching on January 3rd, 2019 by steve

Ireland“When I went to university in the US I was struck by how ‘managed’ student learning was. Each module had homeworks, quizzes, mid-terms and finals. It was common for lecturers to follow a single textbook and to assign readings for that textbook. It was a radically different approach to what I was used to in UCD …” (more)

[An Irish Blog about Education, 3 January]


US visa bill for Irish graduates scuppered by single US senator

Posted in Governance and administration on January 3rd, 2019 by steve

Ireland“New efforts will have to be made to secure thousands of potential new US working visas for Irish people after the deadline passed for it to be approved in the US Senate …” (more)

[, 3 January]

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US visa bill for Irish graduates set to be casualty of ‘mayhem and crisis’ in Washington

Posted in Governance and administration on December 22nd, 2018 by steve

Ireland“Hopes for thousands of new US working visas for Irish people look to have been scuppered by a last-minute objection by a single US Senator. The bill sought to allow Irish citizens avail of surplus E-3 visas that are specifically for Australians …” (more)

[, 21 December]

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Posts of Professors Holding Babies in Class Often Go Viral. Is That the Reality of Students With Kids?

Posted in Life on December 20th, 2018 by steve

“The story is always the same. A professor tells a student with a young child that she (it’s always a woman) can bring her baby to class. The professor invariably holds the child, someone shares the image on social media, and the post goes viral …” (more)

[Cailin Crowe, Chronicle of Higher Education, 19 December]

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Where Are All the Female Architects?

Posted in Governance and administration on December 16th, 2018 by steve

“To get a sense of the state of opportunity for women in architecture, consider that the firm getting the most high-profile architectural commissions in the world right now has just one female principal and this web address: Yes, BIG (for Bjarke Ingels Group) is based in Denmark (hence the ‘dk’), but the firm’s use of this cheeky address just about sums up the situation facing many women in the architectural profession today …” (more)

[Allison Arieff, New York Times, 15 December]

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‘Changing demographics of scientific careers: The rise of the temporary workforce’

Posted in Research on December 11th, 2018 by steve

Abstract: Contemporary science has been characterized by an exponential growth in publications and a rise of team science. At the same time, there has been an increase in the number of awarded PhD degrees, which has not been accompanied by a similar expansion in the number of academic positions. In such a competitive environment, an important measure of academic success is the ability to maintain a long active career in science. In this paper, we study workforce trends in three scientific disciplines over half a century. We find dramatic shortening of careers of scientists across all three disciplines. The time over which half of the cohort has left the field has shortened from 35y in the 1960s to only 5y in the 2010s. In addition, we find a rapid rise (from 25 to 60% since the 1960s) of a group of scientists who spend their entire career only as supporting authors without having led a publication. Altogether, the fraction of entering researchers who achieve full careers has diminished, while the class of temporary scientists has escalated. We provide an interpretation of our empirical results in terms of a survival model from which we infer potential factors of success in scientific career survivability. Cohort attrition can be successfully modeled by a relatively simple hazard probability function. Although we find statistically significant trends between survivability and an author’s early productivity, neither productivity nor the citation impact of early work or the level of initial collaboration can serve as a reliable predictor of ultimate survivability.

Changing demographics of scientific careers: The rise of the temporary workforce, Staša Milojević, Filippo Radicchi, and John P Walsh. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the USA published ahead of print December 10, 2018,

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