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CHAPTER The Demography of Postdoctoral Education We received usable responses to our census of postdoctoral s from 10,740 persons who determined that they were included within our definition. Assuming that we had a 65 percent rate of return,1 in the spring of 1967 there were approximately 16,000 postdoctorals including U.S. citizens either in this country or abroad and foreign nationals in this country. Compared with Berelson's estimate2 (although he was concerned only with postdoctorals at academic institutions), the number of postdoc- torals has doubled between 1960 and 1967. The rate of doubling has not been uniform across all fields. In chemistry the numbers have doubled in five or six years,3 while in physics the doubling required only four or five years.4 We will examine the situation in each dis- cipline later. For the present it is sufficient to note that until recently the num- ber of postdoctorals has been increasing steadily since World War II. There is evidence that the growth has now begun to level off, if not to de- crease. In spite of an increase in the number of applicants, the number of fel- lowships awarded by the National Science Foundation has almost halved in the last three years. The Committee on Physics and Society (COMPAS) of the American Institute of Physics has reported that although the number of post- See Appendix A-l. Bernard Betelson, Postdoctoral Work in American Universities, pp. 119-130. 3NAS-NRC, Chemistry Opportunities and Needs, Publ. 1292, Washington, D.C., 1963. 4NAS-NRC, Physics: Survey and Outlook, Publ. 1295, Washington, D. C., 1966. 49

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50 THE DEMOGRAPHY OF POSTDOCTORAL EDUCATION FIGURE 2 Profile of U.S. Postdoctorals. HOST INSTITUTION DEGREE AND APPOINTMENT LEX 1OO- POS1 -PhD — — ^ ••••. > "•~ -• • — POST- MD POST 25 • PhD CO AND ^ MD K O POCTDOC1 C OCODCIC JOCPROOIT GOVT. ICDUCTRY OOROIGC MMODIOTO RMODIOTO CONIOR C Ul 6 o o t. ^ Ul -1 1 Ul •7 0 = FIELD OF STUDY CITIZENSHIP AND SEX ZlOOn Ul U oc Ul Q. 75- U S. FOR EIGN 50- ^•^^ s ^ ^ , ^ . ^ ~ Q. _j y) -I W _i en DC Ul Ul Ul Ul 2 Ul .OGICO CIONCO < Ul COCIO CIOCCO Ul 0 OCOO OCOO ^Z ^0 5 i O w ^ w CO • m Source: NRC, Office of Scientific Personnel, Postdoctoral Census Questionnaire.

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51 THE COMPOSITION OF THE POSTDOCTORAL POPULATION doctorals in physics has increased slightly between 1965-66 and 1966-67, the figure was expected to decrease in 1968-69 as the hiring of new postdoctoral s was deferred because of the uncertainty in federal support.5 (It did decrease, by about 3 percent.) The COM PAS survey of 130 department chairmen re- vealed that the number of physics postdoctoral s per faculty member was expected to fall from 0.34 (where it has stabilized for three years) to 0.29. (The implications of a reduction of the number of postdoctoral appointments will be pursued in Chapter 6.) The Composition of the Postdoctoral Population As is shown in Figure 2, 81 percent of the postdoctoral s are at academic insti- tutions in the United States, 8 percent are at U.S. nonprofit organizations, 7 percent are at federal research establishments, 4 percent are in other countries, and only 0.4 percent are in industrial installations. Although the universities predominate as host institutions, it is important to keep in mind that signifi- cant numbers of post doctorals have chosen other places to do research. It will become clear that the nature of the experience and the aspirations of the post- doctorals are relatively independent of the host institution. A more significant difference among the segments of the postdoctoral popu- lation is the type of degree that the postdoctoral has earned. According to the responses to our census,6 62 percent hold a research doctorate only (PhD or equivalent), 31 percent hold a professional doctorate only (MD, DDS, DVM, etc.), 3 percent hold both the PhD and the MD, and 4 percent reported no doctorate.7 Because of the different nature of the predoctoral experience, the postdoctoral activity is different for the PhD and the MD. PhD's, having had more research experience, play the role of apprentices, whereas most MD's, receiving perhaps their first research training, tend to have the status of students of research. Another critical difference among the postdoctorals is the level of their professional seniority. An established researcher will generally neither seek 5Survey of the Committee on Physics and Society-Report No. 1, American Institute of Physics, February 27, 1968. Unless otherwise indicated all data will be presented in terms of what we collected from the various questionnaires. If we have not received uniform return rates from the various segments of the population, the actual distribution will differ from what is reported. Un- fortunately, there is no way to correct such errors. A number of scholars receive appointments and fellowships of the postdoctoral charac- ter without having earned a doctoral degree. Some of these are from foreign countries where the doctorate has a different significance from that in the United States.

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52 THE DEMOGRAPHY OF POSTDOCTORAL EDUCATION nor expect the same kind of appointment that a fresh PhD will accept, nor will their activities necessarily be the same. From this perspective, several cate- gories are usually established. The "regular" postdoctoral with the PhD is one within five years of his PhD. The senior postdoctoral with the PhD is more than five years beyond his PhD. A similar distinction can be made among those with the MD except that we have used seven years as the dividing point. This allows the man to serve one year of internship and several years of resi- dency before taking a postdoctoral appointment. In this study the post-PhD categories are defined somewhat differently from those in most fellowship programs in order to group the postdoctorals in more homogeneous sets. With a complication to be described below there are three basic subcategories: immediate postdoctoral, intermediate postdoc- toral, and senior postdoctoral. The immediate postdoctoral is within two years of his doctorate, the intermediate postdoctoral is between two years and five years from his doctorate, and the senior postdoctoral is more than five years from his doctorate. A fourth category is important and overlaps those already given. This group comprises the long-term postdoctorals, defined as those who, however far from their doctorate, have spent more than two years on a postdoctoral appointment and who are not on leave from another position. It is clear that the long-term postdoctoral as we have defined him is not necessarily to be identified with the postdoctoral on indefinite appointment. Some of the long- term postdoctorals are simply completing work that has taken more than two years. The professional research appointee, since he did not perceive of him- self as on a "temporary" appointment, may not have responded to our ques- TABLE 5 Number of Postdoctorals by Level of Appointment and Percent Foreign Percent Postdoctorals Foreign Level of Appointment Number Percent at Level Immediate post-PhD 3,997 37.2 44 Intermediate post-PhD 905 8.4 64 Long-term post-PhD 979 9.1 54 Senior post-PhD 815 7.6 44 Recent post-MD 2,391 22.3 26 Senior post-MD 937 8.7 62 Both PhD and MD 334 3.1 84 No reported doctorate 382 3.6 64 Total 10,740 100.0 46 Source: NRC, Office of Scientific Personnel, Postdoctoral Census Questionnaire.

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53 THE COMPOSITION OF THE POSTDOCTORAL POPULATION tionnaire (in fact, he should not have responded). Thus the reader is cautioned that the long-term category is at best an ill-defined group. The distribution of postdoctoral s by seniority and degree type is given in Table 5. It should be noted that the immediate postdoctoral represents 60 percent of all post-PhD's (3,997 out of 6,686). This is the group that most people refer to when discussing postdoctorals. They have taken postdoctoral appointments as their first employment after completing their degree require- ments. The same may be true of some of the long-term postdoctorals, but they constitute less than 14 percent of the post-PhD's. The intermediate postdoc- torals have been employed elsewhere and they are either on leave of absences or are in transition to new employment. To understand the composition of the postdoctoral population it is neces- sary to explore another dimension. In each discipline there exists the spectrum of levels just described and, to a lesser extent, a mixture of both post-PhD's and post-MD's.8 Similarities across fields are not absent, but similarities within a discipline and across host institutions are often striking. Table 6 shows the distribution of the postdoctoral s in the various fields. It is clear that the social sciences and humanities do not participate in post- doctoral education to the extent that the natural sciences do. Whether these fields ought to be more involved or not is discussed in Chapter 6. It should be noted, however, that these data were collected before the National Endowment for the Humanities made its first awards. An important categorization of the entire population can be made in terms of the citizenship of the postdoctoral. Tables 5 and 6 give the fraction of all individuals at each level and in each field who are foreign. The details of the foreign component of the population and its relation to federal and educa- tional policy will be discussed in Chapter 8. At this point we should be re- minded that international travel of scientists and scholars generally is a well established pattern. Between the end of the last century and the first third of this century many American scientists went abroad, mostly to Germany, for postdoctoral training. It is not at all unlikely that as many as half of the post- doctorals in Germany at that time were not Germans. What has changed is that the locus of scientific excellence has shifted to the United States and the availability of support in this country is now much larger. We must also re- member that 8 percent of all U.S. postdoctoral s (35 percent of senior post- doctorals) are abroad. An important feature of the foreign postdoctoral population is the concen- tration of citizenship in only a few countries. Over half of all foreign postdoc- 8The term post-MD is used here and elsewhere as a generic term that includes all post- professional doctorates. The MD degree is by far the most predominant of these (approxi- mately 95 percent).

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54 THE DEMOGRAPHY OF POSTDOCTORAL EDUCATION TABLE 6 Number of Postdoctoral s by Field and Percent Foreign Percent Postdoctoral Foreign Postdoctoral Field Number Percent in Field Astronomy 106 1.0 56 Mathematics 240 2.2 40 Physics 1,267 11.8 SO Chemistry 1,660 15.5 63 Earth sciences 189 1.8 54 Engineering 274 2.6 64 EMP* Total 3,738 34.9 Biochemistry Other basic life sciences Other biosciences Agricultural sciences Internal medicine Other medical sciences Allied medical sciences Life Sciences Total Psychology Social sciences Social Sciences Total Arts and humanities Other fields Total 1,322 1,030 907 55 1,059 1,166 425 5,964 246 196 442 12.3 9.6 8.4 0.5 9.9 10.8 4.0 55.5 2.3 1.8 4.1 228 2.1 368 3.4 10,740 100.0 51 40 44 62 36 35 37 11 36 23 36 46 ^Engineering, mathematics, and physical sciences. Source: N RC, Office of Scientific Personnel, Postdoctoral Census Questionnaire. torals are from only five countries (United Kingdom, India, Japan, West Ger- many, and Canada) and 75 percent are from 13 countries. Thus, the remaining 68 countries represented account for only 1,211 postdoctorals, or slightly less than 18 postdoctorals per country. Appendix B-3 presents data for foreign postdoctorals by their country of origin. The Postdoctoral in U.S. Academic Institutions In 1967 there were approximately 13,000 postdoctorals of all varieties at U.S. institutions of higher education. Of these, 8,654 responded to the census ques-

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55 THE POSTDOCTORAL IN U.S. ACADEMIC INSTITUTIONS tionnaire. Of the 212 universities that had granted a PhD by 1966, only 147 or 70 percent had postdoctorals. In addition, 27 other colleges or newly formed graduate institutions had postdoctorals. Appendix B-2 contains a listing of the institutions with postdoctorals. The distribution of postdoctorals among these 174 institutions is, however, highly skewed, as is shown in Figure 3. From the curve it can be seen that 50 percent of the postdoctorals are in only 9 percent of the schools that have any postdoctorals and 80 percent of the postdoctorals are in only 25 percent of the schools. Harvard alone can claim 7 percent of the postdoctorals. In spite of the different total number of institutions in the base, the distribution of PhD production is strikingly sim- ilar. The relationship to federal funding9 is also shown in Figure 3. Another way of looking at the concentration is to examine the number of institutions in each field that have postdoctorals compared with the number of institutions that have granted the PhD. Table 7 gives the number of schools having half of the postdoctorals in a given field as well as the fraction of avail- able schools these numbers represent. Although postdoctorals are most widely dispersed among the potential universities in chemistry and internal medicine, the concentration of postdoctorals among a few of the universities is almost independent of field, as can be seen in the last column. The small attention generally paid to postdoctoral activity might be explained by the fact that only at a handful of schools is the number of postdoctorals large enough to be noticeable outside of the departments. In terms of departments, the distribution of postdoctoral activity is given in Table 8. It is not surprising that postdoctorals tend to go to the more pres- tigious schools.10 What might be unexpected is that postdoctorals are present in liberal arts colleges that do not award the PhD. The percentages given for colleges at which less than half the faculty have the PhD may be inflated since the return rate may have been higher from departments with postdoctorals. The current pattern does not differ significantly from what Berelson found in 1960. He found that the institutions in the Association of American Uni- versities (AAU) did about two thirds of the postdoctoral work in American universities.11 At that time the AAU had about 40 members, which would imply that approximately one fifth of all schools had 67 percent of the post- doctorals in 1960. 9A total of 298 schools received funds in excess of $12,000 in 1966 to support research from the AEC, NASA, or the Department of Defense. Since NSF and HEW contribute funds for nonresearch purposes, it is difficult to determine whether the funds from them represent research support. The fit in Figure 3 would not be nearly so close if all of the schools receiving federal support were included. I °The grouping of institutions by reputation is explained in Appendix B-2, which also includes summary data for postdoctorals at U.S. academic institutions. II Berelson,/oc. cit.

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66 THE DEMOGRAPHY OF POSTDOCTORAL EDUCATION FIGURES Distribution of 1967 Postdoctorals among U.S. Institutions and Comparison to 1960-66 PhD Production and 1966 Federal Academic Science Obligations. lOO-i- • Postdoctorals PhD.s Produced Federal Obligations 20 40 60 80 100 PERCENTAGE OF POSTDOCTORALS, PhD.s. DOLLARS OBLIGATED Source: NRC, Office of Scientific Personnel, Postdoctoral Census Questionnaire and Doctorate Records File NSF, data compiled for the Committee on Academic Science and Engineering (CASE) An adequate picture of postdoctoral activity in the universities can be ob- tained only if we examine the various kinds of postdoctoral s there. Table 9 gives the distribution among levels in the various fields. The significance of the activity, both for the university and for the individual postdoctoral, depends on the level of appointment. Usually the young man who proceeds to a post- doctoral appointment immediately after his doctorate is motivationally and professionally different from a seasoned researcher. Moreover, he is at a much more critical point in his career than the older man. Since 84 percent of these

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58 THE DEMOGRAPHY OF POSTDOCTORAL EDUCATION TABLE 8 Percentage of Academic Institutions Having Postdoctorals by Type of Institution and Department Type of Percentage with Postdoctorals by Department Basic Academic Physical Medical Social Institution Sciences Engineering Biosciences Sciences Sciences Humanities Ten leading 96 72 86 100 61 30 Twenty other major 78 67 79 97 36 18 Established 58 21 71 71 16 8 Developing 26 5 20 69 6 1 Others More than half PhD faculty 4 6 7 25 1 0 Less than half PhD faculty 1 0 0 0 0 1 Source: NRC, Office of Scientific Personnel, Postdoctoral Census Questionnaire. immediate postdoctorals have chosen to do their work at universities, we should discuss their situation next. Immediate PhD Postdoctorals An increasing number of PhD recipients have been selecting postdoctoral appointments as their first appointment after the doctorate. In 1962, 8.5 percent of all PhD's produced in this country went immediately into postdoc- toral positions.12 By 1967, the fraction had increased to 11.6 percent. Since the number of graduating doctorates had grown from 11,507 to 20,295 in the same time interval, this relatively small percentage change indicates almost a tripling in the number of postdoctorals. The behavior of doctoral recipients in the various fields shows even more striking changes with time (Table 10). The percentage in physics and astronomy taking a postdoctoral appointment has moved from 16 percent of the 1962 class to 26 percent of the 1967 class. Biochemistry sent 36 percent of its doc- toral recipients on to postdoctoral work in 1962; by 1967 that fraction had 12These data are derived from the Doctoral Records File, maintained by the Office of Scientific Personnel of the National Research Council from the annually conducted Sur- vey of Earned Doctorates. A questionnaire is filled out by doctoral candidates when they have completed the requirements for their degrees. The respondents are asked to indicate their anticipated employment. Follow-up studies show that their responses are accurate.

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115 THE POSTDOCTORAL IN NONACADEMIC INSTITUTIONS The foreign post-MD is much more likely to seek an academic career. In part this is a reflection of his preference, compared to the American MD, for the basic medical sciences. But even in the clinical fields almost three fourths of the foreign postdoctorals indicate a university as their career location. The Postdoctoral in Nonacademic Institutions Percentage of Postdoctorals at Nonacademic and Academic Host Institutions 100 80- 60- o 10 40- I UJ ^ 20 - 2 - f.\t——— o £" z I NONACADEMIC INSTITUTIONS ACADEMIC INSTITUTIONS Although allusions have been made to that portion (19 percent) of the post- doctoral population not in U. S. academic institutions and occasional com- parisons between the two segments have been made, the nonacademic postdoc- toral activity deserves special consideration. Outside the universities, postdoc- torals can be found in nonprofit institutions, in industrial laboratories, in fed- eral government installations, and abroad. With the exception of industry, none of the above categories is homogeneous; each includes a variety of envi- ronments. Nonprofit institutions encompass hospitals, research institutes, pri-

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116 THE DEMOGRAPHY OF POSTDOCTORAL EDUCATION Nonacademic Host Institutions: Percentage of Postdoctoral s by Field of Postdoctoral, Sex and Citizenship, and Level of Appointment. 100- FIELD OF POSTDOCTORAL 75- l °-50- EMP Medical Sciences Biosciences Other Fields UI * 5 25 NONPROFIT INDUSTRY GOVERNMENT ABROAD LEVEL OF APPOINTMENT 100- Immediate PhD Intermediate PhD Senior PhD Long-Term PhD - Post-MD NONPROFIT INDUSTRY GOVERNMENT ABROAD

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117 THE POSTDOCTORAL IN NONACADEMIC INSTITUTIONS SEX AND CITIZENSHIP 100- K O 75- U.S. Male U.S. Female Foreign, both sexes NONPROFIT INDUSTRY GOVERNMENT ABROAD Source NRC, Office of Scientific Personnel, Postdoctoral Census Questionnaire vate laboratories, libraries, museums, and state or local government offices. The federal government installations range from the quasi-academic laborato- ries, such as the Lawrence Radiation Laboratory at the University of Califor- nia and the Ames Laboratory at Iowa State University, through the National Bureau of Standards and the Los Alamos Scientific Laboratory, to the mission- oriented Fort Detrick Biological Laboratories of the Army and Houston Manned Spacecraft Center of NASA. Of major importance is the Bethesda campus of the National Institutes of Health. Postdoctoral activity abroad includes both appointments at foreign academic institutions and archeological field trips in uncharted territories. Other host institutions out of the country are libraries and museums. With such a variety of institutions, little can be said that applies to all of them. Figure 9 shows the differing patterns of fields, of levels of appointment, of citizenship, and of sex among the types of nonacademic host institutions. The lack of uniformity is the most obvious feature of these charts. There are, nevertheless, some important trends and each category of host institution dem- onstrates interesting characteristics. The behavior of U. S. male postdoctorals can be taken as a standard against which both the U. S. females and the foreigners can be measured. Each of the

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118 THE DEMOGRAPHY OF POSTDOCTORAL EDUCATION latter groups must contend with special restrictions and attitudes that modify their postdoctoral opportunities. For the U. S. female, marital ties and linger- ing prejudice limit her freedom of movement. The foreign postdoctoral con- tends not only with language problems and scarcity of support in some fields, but also is differentially attracted to the United States as one moves from field to field. Especially for more senior scholars in the humanities and in the social sciences, only those concerned mainly with American studies would find the United States a particularly fertile research environment. Similar situ- ations, though sometimes more subtle, face the natural scientists. Although in some fields American science is preeminent, this is certainly not the case in all. The European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN) or the Niels Bohr Institute in Copenhagen are certainly as attractive for physicists of what- ever country as their American counterparts. Academic institutions can also be used as a standard against which other host institutions may be compared. This is not to imply that the universities have the "proper" distribution of fields, sex, citizenship, or level of postdoc- toral activity, but rather that, as the largest category, they represent the choice that the bulk of the postdoctorals have made. The other categories of host institutions are important for the participants but are seldom statistically sig- nificant in the total postdoctoral picture. Nonprofit Institutions As indicated above, this category comprises several different kinds of institu- tions. In terms of numbers of postdoctorals, rather than numbers of institu- tions, the composition of the nonprofit group is 35 percent at hospitals, 14 percent at research foundations (usually medical), 40 percent at research insti- tutes and laboratories, and the remaining 11 percent at libraries, museums, and assorted agencies and nonprofit corporations. There are 817 postdoctorals in this group, of whom 50 percent are U. S. males, 7 percent are U. S. females, and 43 percent are foreign. By field, the proportions follow the general trends. The number of foreigners decreases as one moves from the BMP fields through biological and medical sciences to the other fields, and women are more likely to be found in the biological sciences and the other fields than in the BMP fields or the medical sciences. These patterns hold for all categories of host institutions. The medical sciences are more predominant in nonprofit institutions than in the universities, as are the humanities and social sciences. Of course, these fields are not represented at the same institution. The heterogeneity is caused by the variety of types of institutions subsumed under the category "non- profit." Nevertheless, some quasi-academic institutions do have several fields

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119 THE POSTDOCTORAL IN NONACADEMIC INSTITUTIONS represented. Prominent among these are The Institute for Advanced Study on the East coast and Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences on the West. Both are purely postdoctoral institutions offering no formal course work. Although informal seminars are regularly held, scholars work independ- ently except for the serendipitous collaboration that each institution attempts to foster through careful selection of its scholars. The invitational nature of the nonprofit institutions accounts for the rela- tively small proportion of immediate postdoctoral s and the larger numbers of intermediate and senior postdoctorals. Generally, the nonmedical institutions are concerned with research rather than training. Consequently, their limited resources are reserved for established or at least budding scholars who can be expected to be productive over the short period of the appointment. The immediate postdoctorals who are at some nonprofit institutions are there for the same reasons as those at universities, both from their own point of view and from the point of view of the institution. The president of a medi- cal research institute states, "Nonuniversity research institutions need the serv- ices of postdoctoral scientists to the same degree that university research pro- grams do." Over four-fifths of the post-PhD's at nonprofit institutions are again either returning to or seeking academic employment following their postdoctoral appointments, and even 43 percent of the post-MD's are headed for the uni- versity. The nonprofit institution (whether a research institute or a hospital) is, therefore, an alternative place to do research but it is not really different from the university as a place of postdoctoral study.39 It often has its own advantages for postdoctoral study, including special equipment or library col- lections and fewer distractions than a university. Industrial Laboratories We have been able to locate a total of 47 postdoctorals at three industrial labo- ratories. The three firms are Bell Telephone Laboratories, Avco-Everett Re- search Laboratory, and The Mitre Corporation. We know that other industrial laboratories have postdoctorals, but the number is small. Of 42 spokesmen for industry who responded to our inquiries, 17 indicated that they had formal or informal postdoctoral programs. It is characteristic, however, that even the largest corporations offer only a handful of such positions. Except for the Bell 39The director of a nonprofit laboratory engaged in research in the life sciences says: "I think that this laboratory behaves more like the appendage of a university than an ortho- dox nonprofit institution. ... All our research personnel have had university postdoctoral experience." (It is not clear from the evidence that the "orthodox" nonprofit institution exists.)

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120 THE DEMOGRAPHY OF POSTDOCTORAL EDUCATION Laboratories (where there are 36 postdoctorals out of the 47 who filled out our questionnaire), no firm mentioned any larger number than two or three. Most of the appointments are offered on an informal basis. One company, North American Aviation, announces the postdoctoral appointments available at its Science Center in the same fashion as a university. A major reason why these firms have postdoctorals is the competition with universities for doctoral talent. The argument is made by the vice-president of a research corporation in the following way: "To the extent that the young PhD is strongly attracted to the university environment for postdoctoral stud- ies, other organizations in need of PhD's must either find ways to bid compet- itively for their services or provide themselves by other means with equivalent learning and capability." Another vice-president says flatly: "With the advent of more industry-like research going on in universities, it becomes necessary for industry to become more university-like to attract research scientists." Most industrial firms admit that offering postdoctoral appointments is a useful recruiting device. Only a few speak of the need to educate young PhD's in their area of research or point to the stimulus that postdoctorals can give their firm's research programs. One respondent states as a matter of course that "one purpose" of the firm's postdoctoral program is "to attract interested and promising individuals to the laboratories, with the expectation that if we feel they are outstanding, they may become interested in our work and choose to remain with us." A company spokesman who mentions another purpose first quickly lists recruiting second: The prime motivation for establishing the postdoctoral program was the desire to increase in our laboratory the number of young, high-class research men above the number we could afford as permanent employees for the purpose of increasing the infusion of. new ideas, experiences and techniques into our research organization. In addition, we expect to hire a few of these people just as we hire postdoctorals from other establishments. Then the appointment is also a trial period for the laboratory and the man, which can be terminated by either party without prejudice. That such a motivation is reasonable is supported by the data in Table 11 (p. 62). Thirty-five percent of the immediate postdoctorals in industry will remain in industry. This is a larger percentage by far than that from any other source. Nevertheless, only a minor fraction of the nation's industrial firms offer postdoctoral programs. It is instructive to consider why the vast majority do not. For many firms the idea of offering short-term appointments raises serious difficulties. The research director of a major steel company argues: The very nature of industrial research including the possibility of involvement with pro- prietary matters, the dependence of fringe benefits on length of service, and other con- siderations militate against temporary opportunities being offered in industrial research. It is my feeling that such an arrangement would tend to encourage "floaters," employees

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121 THE POSTDOCTORAL IN NONACADEMIC INSTITUTIONS who move at frequent intervals from one organization to another motivated solely by the possibility of a higher salary as a result of each move. The president of a consulting firm writes: I find it difficult from my own experience to make a case for offering postdoctoral edu- cational opportunities within very many industrial organizations which I have seen. The reasons for this are first, from management's point of view, I doubt that a cost effective- ness justification could be made for it; and second, from the student's point of view I doubt that he would find the climate and other motivational factors adequate. This is not to say that PhD's coming into industry do not have learning opportunities, but rather that the opportunities are too "real world" and, by definition, are therefore distracting and diverting. It seems to me that most PhD's interested in postdoctoral education are inter- ested in acquiring greater depth rather than greater breadth, and the last thing in the world they want is distraction and diversion. An oil company that has received many inquiries from young PhD's seeking postdoctoral experience has nevertheless felt compelled to turn them down: For reasons that appear obvious to us we are interested in hiring "permanent" employ- ees. An equally strong point is the great proprietary interest we seek to develop from our applied research, which represents about 90 percent of the total. A similar statement comes from the vice-president for research of a pharma- ceutical company: We have not attempted to offer postdoctoral opportunities in the sense that the candi- date would work for us for only one or a very limited number of years to enlarge his doc- toral experience, and then move on. Almost without exception we select our people with the intention that they will become "permanent" members of our research organization. . . . our laboratories operate on the open-door approach, with relatively free discussion of our objectives, and our successes and our failures. This community spirit flourishes best with employees who have made more than a temporary commitment to our organization. We shall return in Chapter 7 to the relationship between postdoctoral edu- cation and the industrial world. For the present we will content ourselves with commentary on the census data. Figure 9 shows that over half of the postdoctoral s in industrial laboratories are foreign. Although the numbers are small, these postdoctorals from abroad are almost entirely from developed countries, a pattern that is significantly different than at other types of host institutions. It is also evident that most of the foreign postdoctorals are not fresh PhD's; the contrast with the Ameri- can postdoctoral, who tends to be younger, is most acute in industry. The industrial postdoctoral is also likely to be in the physical sciences and engineering. The small fraction of life scientists probably reflects the proprie- tary nature of the health products industry (mainly pharmaceuticals), which is particularly adverse to the "temporary employee."

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122 THE DEMOGRAPHY OF POSTDOCTORAL EDUCATION Federal Government Laboratories One way of characterizing the postdoctoral population in the federal labora- tories is to indicate the agency that supports the laboratory. If we do so, we find that 47 percent of the postdoctorals are supported by the National Insti- tutes of Health and virtually all of them are at the main campus of NIH in Bethesda, Maryland. Thirty-two percent of the federal postdoctorals are at one or another of the Atomic Energy Commission's laboratories such as Brookhaven, Los Alamos, Oak Ridge, Argonne, or the Lawrence Radiation Laboratory at the University of California. Eight percent are at installations of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration such as the Goddard Space Flight Center, the Houston Manned Spacecraft Center, or the Jet Pro- pulsion Laboratory at the California Institute of Technology. Five percent are at the several laboratories of the Department of Defense or of the three serv- ices. Among these laboratories are the U. S. Naval Research Laboratory, the Fort Detrick Biological Laboratory, and various laboratories of the Air Force Systems Command. The Department of Commerce supports almost 4 percent of the federal postdoctorals at its National Bureau of Standards, while the remaining 4 percent are distributed among installations of the Department of Agriculture, the National Science Foundation, and the Food and Drug Admin- istration. While many of the postdoctorals at NIH are similar to university project associates working on intramural research under the direction of the resident scientists, the majority are Public Health Service officers who are fulfilling selective service obligations. They are, so to speak, involuntary postdoctorals and might not properly be included in our census. The situation at the national laboratories of the AEC is strongly university oriented. Since the Manhattan Project, the government's activity in nuclear science has been dominated by academics, and the structure of the national laboratories reflects this heritage. With the exception of the Oak Ridge Na- tional Laboratory, each of the major installations is governed by either a sin- gle university or a corporation of a group of universities. The multibillion-volt accelerators are operated predominantly for university-based physicists and the flow of people back and forth is continuous. Perhaps for this reason the AEC laboratories are highly desirable locations for postdoctoral study and do not have the problem of other government and industrial laboratories in that appointments there impede a return to the academic world. The uniqueness of the facilities, the academic atmosphere of the activities, and the abundance of basic research in fields ranging from nuclear engineering to genetics more nearly duplicates the university than most nonacademic laboratories.40 40It has been suggested that the identification with universities be made closer by allow- ing the laboratories to grant graduate degrees. See Alvin Weinberg.s "The Federal Labo- ratories and Science Education" (Science, Vol. 136, April 6, 1962, p. 29).

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123 THE POSTDOCTORAL IN NONACADEMIC INSTITUTIONS Postdoctoral appointments at the other federal centers are awarded for the most part by the Research Associateship Programs of the National Research Council. Since 1955, a number of federal laboratories have been hosts to post- doctorals selected by the NRC. The NRC, as well as the individual laboratories, advertises the availability of appointments at universities and elsewhere. Appli- cations from candidates are received by the Council and its selection panels prepare rank-ordered lists of candidates approved for awards.41 There are actually two separate programs under this rubric. In one, the NRC makes the awards and pays the stipends out of funds supplied by a con- tract from the participating laboratories. In the other, appointments are made under Civil Service regulation to as many candidates as the laboratory has funds for, without departing from the rank order as determined by the NRC panels. In the latter program each laboratory has had to receive prior approval from the Civil Service Commission to participate; however, since 1967 the Commission has permitted any laboratory to make one-year postdoctoral appointments through the NRC, if the NRC approves the laboratory's research program and environment. The Commission has also authorized extensions of appointments for a second year if the laboratory determines that the extension would benefit both the individual and the laboratory. The better-known laboratories, especially those engaged in basic research in fields of current interest, e.g., the National Bureau of Standards, have at- tracted increasing numbers of applicants of high caliber. Candidates are less attracted to laboratories where the emphasis is on applied research or develop- ment. Such laboratories appear to have several disadvantages: they publish less in the scientific journals, they are usually less well known, and candidates who might be attracted to them can get better-paid positions of the same sort in industry. The federal laboratories and the National Research Council recognize a double purpose in the associateship programs: to enlist the scientific resources of the laboratories in the development of talented individuals and to contri- bute to the research programs of the laboratories. Care is taken to keep these purposes in balance. If, over the years, for example, more than a third of the associates in a laboratory's postdoctoral program choose to continue with the laboratory as permanent employees, this is viewed as cause for concern. It is felt that a program is failing in its educational purpose if too many of its appointees close their career options in this way. Some ambivalence exists in the attitudes of the participating laboratories. There is a certain amount of reluctance on their part to releasing 100 percent of the exceptional talent they train. Table 11 (p. 62) indicates that almost a 41 In spite of possessing all the characteristics of fellows in the selection process, these "research associates" are subject to full taxation. As in the university the distinction between fellows and research associates is more a function of legal language than opera- tionally different treatment.

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124 THE DEMOGRAPHY OF POSTDOCTORAL EDUCATION quarter of the federal postdoctoral s choose to remain in government employ following their appointment. However, graduates of the program who return to the university (and 55 percent do) often motivate their students to become employees and associates in the participating laboratory. Except in the physical sciences, the foreign postdoctoral plays a much less important role in federal laboratories than at other types of host institutions. Only 26 percent of the federal postdoctoral s are foreign. In part this is a reflec- tion of the dominance of the life sciences and the draft alternative that posi- tions in the Public Health Service represent. Obviously only Americans are concerned with the latter and Public Health Service officers are a large frac- tion (approximately half) of the federal postdoctorals. Postdoctorals Abroad Compared to the postdoctoral at an American university, the postdoctoral abroad is much more likely to be a mature scholar on leave for a year or less to make use of the unique resources overseas or to discover what is happening in foreign laboratories. In fact, as we have seen, the senior postdoctoral is as likely to be abroad as at home. The younger man is not as ready to leave the country, since his visibility for subsequent employment is less at a foreign establishment than at a domestic one. These behavior patterns are easily dis- cernible in the NSF postdoctoral programs, since the awardee may select his own fellowship institution. The fact that only 44 of the 120 regular postdoc- torals in 1968 chose to take their appointments abroad, while 42 of the 55 senior postdoctorals did so, illustrates the behavior. Some (10 percent) of the immediate postdoctorals abroad have already been appointed to the faculty of a university, but have delayed the actual beginning of the faculty appoint- ment to accept the fellowship. Not having to worry about their post-appoint- ment employment, they are free to leave the country. For comparison, only 2 percent of the immediates at U. S. universities are on leave from another posi- tion. Few object to the idea that the senior scholar should travel abroad, not only to represent United States science and learning abroad, but also to see his subject approached from another point of view and to become as familiar with foreign centers as the foreign scholars are with ours. Only the severest chauvinism assumes that the best in all fields is here and that nothing can be learned from others. The problem is whether the same values prevail for the immediate postdoctoral. Those in favor of postdoctoral opportunities abroad for the new PhD point out that for some fellows the foreign laboratory may be the best place to go because techniques and ideas there are more advanced than in the United States. Others, recognizing the indifference of science and

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125 THE POSTDOCTORAL IN NONACADEMIC INSTITUTIONS scholarship generally to national boundaries, say that travel per se is not a justification but that the determining factor is where the postdoctoral can . receive the best research experience. If that laboratory is not in this country, so be it. Those opposed to the postdoctoral appointment abroad make their objec- tion on relative grounds. Granted that in some areas superior experience can be found in foreign centers, the question is whether the additional cost is justi- fied. If the man can receive almost as good an experience in this country, why not extend the funds by restricting the travel? Underlying these arguments is the suspicion that the move overseas will involve such a change of environ- ment that the research will not be efficiently pursued. There are problems involved in changing institutions in this country; for the American who goes, say, to Europe there are the additional difficulties of language and custom that must be mastered. Over 97 percent of the immediate postdoctorals abroad are supported on fellowships. The implication of this fact is that, on the whole, they are of higher quality than postdoctorals generally. They have been highly screened and are selected for their probable achievement of research leadership. On the basis of baccalaureate-to-PhD time lapse they are better than all other groups of postdoctorals. The average time lapse in the physical sciences for the im- mediate postdoctoral abroad is 5.0 years and for the basic medical sciences it is 5.9 years. Each is significantly below the time lapses given in Table 19 (p. 78) for the postdoctorals at U. S. institutions. A significant point is that we are not talking about very many people. Only 7 percent of the immediate U. S. male postdoctorals are overseas—a total of 145 people by our count. What might be inappropriate for the entire group of immediate postdoctorals could be valid for a highly select subgroup of them. The subtle influences that produce the creative researcher are not understood. It would seem prudent not to foreclose the foreign experience for a few in the name of economy, as the marginal cost probably does not begin to match the value of the work that one future Nobel prizewinner among them might accomplish.