Skip navigation
The Black Hole

We’re writing a book to help improve science training – and we need your input


After many months of consideration, Jonathan and I have finally decided to push forward with making the Black Hole blog entries into a book. The last six years have seen a steady stream of blog entries, reader comments and guest posts that have highlighted many of the major issues challenging the way our system currently educates and trains scientists.

We believe the system is fundamentally flawed and needs to adapt to the changing human resources of our science workforce, the rise in research-intensive affiliate institutes and the need to bring this knowledge (and the people!) out of the university system to benefit society at large.

The book is not meant to be a string of complaints, rather it is meant to be a progressive step toward improving the way in which we educate and train scientists. We won’t have all the answers, but our hope is that by opening the door and flicking on some lights we might expose some dark areas of the research landscape that are poorly understood and in significant disrepair – things occuring in academic science that would shock the typical workforce.

So, this is our first call out to readers to help us paint the most accurate portrait possible. We need your facts, your figures, your stories and your thoughts. The Facebook group will be a permanent dumping ground for such ideas – yours and ours. The new Twitter account, @WastedTalent16, is meant to chart our book-writing journey into 2016. We’ll also use it to seek help on various chapters and possible solutions as we wade through some delicate issues while also keeping our readers posted on progress, and encourage you to do the same.

Finally, I’ll close with our articles over the last quarter, including an excellent guest post during postdoc appreciation week by Jiro Inoue of the Canadian Association of Postdoctoral Scholars:

Guest Blogger – Jiro Inoue



Dave also had a few entries this quarter over at Signals blog:

We hope our readers are enjoying the content. Let us know what we can do to improve or what we should continue writing about or resurrect from the past. Email us at [email protected] or use Facebook and Twitter.

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.
Post a comment
University Affairs moderates all comments according to the following guidelines. If approved, comments generally appear within one business day. We may republish particularly insightful remarks in our print edition or elsewhere.

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *