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The Black Hole

Quarterly summary – haven’t had a guest post in a while…

Is there an important issue you feel the Black Hole hasn't covered? Why not write a guest post!


This year we’re looking to catch all of those early career researchers who made a New Year’s resolution to start something new (the new thing in this case being to build up a writing portfolio or to try and drive an opinion change on an issue that affects early career researchers).  In fact, the Black Hole had its first year ever without a guest post – perhaps this was due to Jonathan and I getting increasingly busy (new jobs and babies!) and not reaching out to colleagues as much or perhaps people feel that their issue gets adequate coverage on the web – either way, it was noticeable! I therefore sat down and tried to drum up a few issues that we do not have experience in that we would love to hear from people on – please do get in touch.  Also, if you know of non-Black Hole resources/articles on these issues, feel free to email or poke us on Facebook/Twitter to get some additional coverage.

Quick hit issues of interest:

  1. The situation in other fields (both Jonathan and I are in medical sciences and often the blog is biased toward those experiences)
  2. How to leave the academy from those who have done so before (in the wake of the postdoc survey that highlighted mental health issues, we’d be keen to hear from people who have seen some dark days in academic labs and finally broke out)
  3. How to stay in academic science without becoming a group leader (job types, life decisions, etc)
  4. How new scientific research reaches policymakers, industry leaders, healthcare professionals, secondary school educators, etc – we’d love to hear from people with experience here.
  5. The smoke and mirrors of university administration – how does change get enacted?  What are the overall missions of senior administrators (aside from a high Maclean’s ranking!)

The list could go on and on and we do not want to limit this site to what we think is important, so please do get in touch.  As some inspiration, I’ve compiled a list of the top 5 most read guest blog posts that we’ve had over the past eight years:

Last quarter Jonathan focused on career choices in (and out of) academia and I focused on my recent parental leave and some broader national issues.



We wish our readers a very happy and productive 2017!

Dave and Jonathan

David Kent
Dr. David Kent is a principal investigator at the York Biomedical Research Institute at the University of York, York, UK. He trained at Western University and the University of British Columbia before spending 10 years at the University of Cambridge, UK where he ran his research group until 2019. His laboratory's research focuses on the fundamental biology of blood stem cells and how changes in their regulation lead to cancers. David has a long history of public engagement and outreach including the creation of The Black Hole in 2009.
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