Lovely article by Martin Krieger explaining what mathematicians actually do: http://www.ams.org/notices/200410/comm-krieger.pdf
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“So when you are asked, What do mathematicians do?, you can say: I like to think we are just like lawyers or philosophers who explore the meanings of our everyday concepts, we are like inventors who employ analogies to solve problems, and we are like marketers who try to convince others they ought to think “Kodak” when they hear “photography” (or the competition, who try to convince them that they ought to think “Fuji”).
A round-up of some recent articles on academic precarity, and inequalities within academia, some grimmer than others.
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France has plans to build a new star university in Paris South in the hope of getting that one university into global rankings. It would have 70,000 students and 10,000 researchers, it would be super modern and have direct connections to the airport, etc.
An important article by Paul Mason at The Guardian today:
Read this fairytale substituting “Ivan” for “PhD-student”, “Tsar” for PhD-advisor, “Firebird” for tenure, and “Gray Wolf” for the pitfalls of academic life. Don’t forget that this is a fairytale and in real life by far not all Prince Ivans marry the princess and life happily ever after. 687 more words