Assessing the postdoc experience

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The Scientist Staff
Feb 28, 2007

Assessing the Postdoc Experience

The average length of time postdocs plan to spend in their current position is two years. The average length of time that respondents have spent in a postdoc position overall is 2.8 years. In North America, 37.7% of postdocs spend more than five years in their position.

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63.1% of postdocs in North America were not born in the country where they are doing their postdoc. Similarly, 57.2% of postdocs are not citizens in the country where they're doing their postdoc.

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Seventy-nine percent of postdocs rate their positions as Good, Very Good, or Excellent. However, expectations of future employment are relatively scattered. Compared to 2006, the number of postdocs expecting to work in industry rose 2 percentage points to 16% (see Industry Postdocs, p. 55), while the number of postdocs planning on a tenure-track academic position fell 2 percentage points to 27%. A quarter (25%) of postdocs plan to stay in their current position or to move to another postdoc position (see length of postdocs graph). Twelve percent of postodocs don't know where they will be two years from now, while 8% see themselves moving to government positions or doing something different altogether.

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