Posts

December 11, 2014

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7:19 PM | Well done, Intel
From an ad for a Materials Chemist (synthetically oriented) at Intel Corporation, these requirements (emphasis mine):Minimum Qualifications:The candidate must possess a Ph.D. in one of the following disciplines: Chemistry, specifically synthetic inorganic, synthetic organic, or synthetic organometallic chemistry Preferred Qualifications:Strong synthetic background, especially as it relates to the handling of air-sensitive compounds  Proficiency in using NMR spectroscopy, x-ray […]
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7:10 PM | Daily Pump Trap: 12/11/14 edition
A few of the positions posted at C&EN Jobs this week:Norwell, MA: Battelle looking for a B.S. chemist (4 years experience) for a GLP study director -- looks to be pesticide-related. Posted salary: 60-105k.Santa Cruz, CA: Another entry in the #cannabischemjobs database. SC Laboratories hiring a M.S/Ph.D. analytical chemist.Floyd, VA:  Hollingsworth & Vose Company is searching for what seems like a product development scientist with some combination of education and experience […]
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2:22 PM | A good non-traditional careers story
Anonymous helpfully points out the continuing Fazlul Sarkar saga at Retraction Watch, including the affidavit in support of PubPeer by Dr. John Krueger, a former ORI investigator who stood up their forensic image group and:My direct expertise in forensic image analysis stems from 20 years of relevant federal work in my second career, starting as one of the original Investigator–Scientists in the Division of Research Investigations (or later the Division of Investigative Oversight), Office […]
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11:54 AM | Join Occupy the SEC in Pushing Congress to Reject Dodd-Frank Deregulation
There’s some tricky business going on right now in politics, with a bunch of ridiculous last-minute negotiations to roll back elements of Dodd-Frank and aid Wall Street banks in the current budget deal. Hell, it’s the end of the year, and people are distracted, so the public won’t mind if the banks get formal government […]
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8:00 AM | My year
In the day job, for most of this year I was seconded onto the Australian Government’s Financial System Inquiry. The Inquiry was established to provide a broad review of the Australian financial system, looking at system stability, competition, consumer protection, technological change and whether the system was serving the needs of users. The Inquiry’s final report is now out […]

December 10, 2014

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3:07 PM | Video cameras won’t solve the #EricGarner situation, but they will help
As many thoughtful people have pointed out already, Eric Garner’s case proves that video evidence is not a magic bullet to combat and punish undue police brutality. The Grand Jury deemed such evidence insufficient for an indictment, even if the average person watching the video cannot understand that point of view. Even so, it would be a […]

December 09, 2014

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7:52 PM | The 2013 Survey of Earned Doctorates is out
How did the Ph.D. chemists do? From "TABLE 59. Statistical profile of postgraduation plans of doctorate recipients in physical sciences fields, by sex and field of study: 2013" (PDF)Let's remember this for the future: the modal outcome of a Ph.D. in chemistry in 2013 was a postdoctoral appointment, just like it has been for the past 20 years.I've taken the Excel file and isolated it to just the chemistry Ph.D.s. Plenty of data to chew on.(Year after year, the thing that continues to amaze me is […]
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4:04 PM | Daily Pump Trap: 12/9/14 edition
A few of the postings from this week's C&EN Jobs:Baton Rouge, LA: Albemarle is looking for an entry-level Ph.D. NMR spectroscopist. Not every day that you see that.Rolla, MO: Brewer Science, searching for a B.S.-level senior research associate.San Francisco Bay area: I think this Bolt Threads engineering job sounds pretty interesting. Why it is at C&EN Jobs is beyond me, though.More engineering positions: Myriant is located in Lake Providence, Louisiana. Looks like they're hiring […]
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3:35 PM | Academic job posting open thread
I got a request for a "academic job hunt" thread recently, so I thought I would give it a try.So, if you're giving a talk somewhere and feel like telling other people how it went and for people to keep track of who has received an offer, etc., feel free to use this post's comments.I strongly suggest to those who want to do such a thing to be very careful about providing too much detail. I also suggest that if you decide that you want to mention the fact that you gave a talk at a moderately […]
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3:21 PM | Ivory Filter Flask: 12/9/14 edition
A variety of the academically-related posts on C&EN Jobs:Athens, TN: Tennessee Wesleyan College is looking for an assistant/associate professor of chemistry. Chance to develop a forensic chemistry course, looks like.Brooklyn, NY: Long Island University - Brooklyn is searching for an assistant professor of inorganic or analytical chemistry.Hong Kong, China: The Chinese University of Hong Kong is searching for a Ph.D. theoretical chemist to be an assistant professor. "A working knowledge […]

December 08, 2014

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6:42 PM | The latest ACS form 990
You still don't get (much) money for being a board member, I see. The latest ACS form 990. More notable for the lack of top compensation for the editor-in-chief of C&EN.Healthy looking compensation, I see. The particulars of ACS pay. 
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4:41 PM | This week's C&EN
A variety of the many interesting articles in C&EN this week:Lots of personnel shifts at ACS in C&EN this week: The new ACS executive director will be Thomas Connelly, a DuPont executive with a Ph.D. in chemical engineering. No real news as to his strategic direction. Madeleine Jacobs reflects with Rudy Baum about her career at ACS. The new editor-in-chief, Bibiana Campos Seijo, has her first column. No mention of climate change yet. (that's a […]
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12:15 PM | FATML and next Saturday’s Eric Garner protest
At the end of this week I’ll be heading up to Montreal to attend and participate in a one-day workshop called Fairness, Accountability, and Transparency in Machine Learning (FATML), as part of a larger machine learning conference called NIPS. It’s being organized by Solon Barocas and Moritz Hardt, who kindly put me on the closing panel of the […]
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8:00 AM | We need more complicated mathematical models in economics
I am half way through David Colander and Roland Kupers’s book Complexity and the Art of Public Policy: Solving Society’s Problems from the Bottom Up. Overall, it’s a good book, although the authors are somewhat slow to get to the point and there are plenty of lines that perplex or annoy (Arnold Kling seemed to […]

December 07, 2014

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5:35 PM | How the U.S. could fight OPEC and win (and why it won't)
OPEC has declared war on American oil production with the intention of making the country more dependent on imported oil and on oil in general. By refusing to cut production in the face of weakening world demand, the cartel has allowed oil prices to fall more than 35 percent since mid-year to levels that are likely to make most new oil production in America's large shale deposits unprofitable. That could not only halt growth in U.S. production, but may lead to an actual drop because production […]

December 06, 2014

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1:29 PM | Aunt Pythia’s advice
It’s been a tough week, friends. Aunt Pythia is both excited and anxious for the future of the country. What with the Ferguson situation, and the Eric Garner protests, there’s very little time to knit. I’ve got nothing of my own to show you today, so instead I’ll just post this: OK now let’s get […]
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8:00 AM | A week of links
Links this week: The case against early cancer detection. The charts on mammogram and PSA testing effectiveness are just as Gerd Gigerenzer would have us present the statistics. The case for business experimentation. Airline inequality. While arguments continue about the predictive power of genetic testing, entrepreneurs are already using it. HT: Steve Hsu However, there are still […]

December 05, 2014

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5:29 PM | Book review: "Navigating the Path to Industry", M.R. Nelson
I have had the chance to review "Navigating the Path to Industry" by M.R. Nelson recently and I wanted to recommend it to readers, especially those who are looking for their first position in industry. Dr. Nelson has a Ph.D. in biochemistry and was a hiring manager in both the biotech and information technology industry before striking out on her own as a consultant.The book is easy to read and written in a funny, conversational style. It consists of 2 parts, the first being the "preparing […]
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5:29 PM | The world has a skills gap, apparently
My weekly Google alert for "skills gap" Clearly we need to begin heavily recruiting skilled extraterrestrials from Mars to deal with our worldwide skills gap. 
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12:45 PM | White progress
It’s pretty hard to find solace in the Eric Garner situation, but since I have been thinking almost exclusively about this stuff, and since by nature I don’t like to be consistently hopeless (it’s too exhausting), I have come up with some positive thinking around it. Namely, basically what Chris Rock has been saying: it’s exposing white […]

December 04, 2014

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7:27 PM | Protected: New Campaign (draft)
There is no excerpt because this is a protected post. The post Protected: New Campaign (draft) appeared first on Principled Societies Project.
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4:25 PM | Daily Pump Trap: 12/4/14 edition
A few of the positions posted on C&EN Jobs this past week:New York City, NY: Looks like D.E. Shaw is hiring computational chemists and postdoctoral fellows again. Interesting stuff -- I wonder what their interview process is like? (on the hedge fund side, don't they have to take a higher-level math test?)Chicago, IL: AbbVie is continuing its strong hiring trend, with the posting of a B.S./M.S. bench organic chemist position as well as a Ph.D. process chemist (experienced) position.Irvine, […]
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11:54 AM | Staten Island Goddam #EricGarner
This is all I got this morning:
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8:00 AM | The unrealistic assumptions of biology
Biologists are usually among the first to tell me that economists rely on unrealistic assumptions about human decision making. They laugh at the idea that people are rational optimisers who care only about maximising consumption. Some of the points are undoubtedly correct. Humans do not care primarily about consumption. They seek mates or other objectives related […]
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6:02 AM | The GSK news
As you can obviously see, work and life were taking up a lot of time today. As tough as my day was (chemistry on a larger scale not being kind to me), it doesn't hold a candle at all to what has happened at GSK around the world today. There are lots of different write-ups on what happened, but here's what FierceBiotech had to say:Hobbled by sliding sales of Advair, GlaxoSmithKline's U.S. group started to chop away at its large organization in North Carolina and Philadelphia on Wednesday as […]

December 03, 2014

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1:07 PM | Neil deGrasse Tyson at NJPAC
Last night I went to the New Jersey Performing Arts Center (NJPAC) with my 12-year-old son to see Neil deGrasse Tyson, whom we both love from the Cosmos series. I also loved this rant on women and blacks in science: So here’s what he talked about last night, which was stimulating and interesting. I’m not covering […]

December 02, 2014

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5:30 PM | A great question: why do holiday layoffs exist?
A respected reader writes in to ask, regarding the GSK announcement tomorrow:"Why does a company opt to let people know they are losing their jobs three weeks before Christmas?" I would actually go so far as to propose that, in the United States, that large-enough companies declare some sort of truce during the holidays. If I were a CEO, I would choose not to hold any reductions in force between say, Thanksgiving and New Year's. I realize that would basically cut out a month in a half […]
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4:37 PM | Daily Pump Trap: 12/2/14 edition
Just a few positions posted on C&EN Jobs this past week, not a whole bunch: Houston, TX: Aramco is looking for a lab tech with "Minimum two (2) years of college or an Associate Degree in related-science major required; Bachelor degree in related science discipline preferred. Nine (9) years industrial research lab experience"Super specific -- H-1b related position? Morristown, NJ: Honeywell is looking for a M.S./Ph.D. analytical chemist to be a lead analytical chemist. Organic and […]
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4:01 PM | Ivory Filter Flask: 12/2/14 edition
A few of the academically-related positions recently posted at C&EN Jobs:New Haven, CT: The University of New Haven is looking for an assistant professor of analytical chemistry. Santa Barbara, CA: Santa Barbara City College is looking for a chemistry instructor. B.S./M.S./Ph.D. desired:The current salary schedule range for a entering tenure-track faculty member is $55,435-$85,364, plus an earned doctoral bonus of $2,771.75. Depending on the entry step, the faculty member increase one […]
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2:43 PM | Educational feedback loops in China and the U.S.
Today I want to discuss a recent review in New York Review of Books, on a new book entitled Who’s Afraid of the Big Bad Dragon? Why China Has the Best (and Worst) Education System in the World by Yong Zhao (hat tip Alex). The review was written by Diane Ravitch, an outspoken critic of No Child Left Behind, Race To The Top, […]
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