Permanent jobs in academia are scarce, and someone needs to let PhD students know

Sociologist Chris Platts found that 1% of young footballers actually gain professional contract. Take away message: becoming a professional footballer is hard.

However, Nature has surveyed more than 5,700 early career scientists who are trying to pursue an academic career. And they found that the chances of getting a job are only slightly better than the footballers’, 3-4%.

Simply put, most PhD students need to make plans for a life outside academic science. And more universities and PhD supervisors must make this clear.

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