Future of Research's Origins

The first Future of Research conference was held in Boston in October of 2014.

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Outcomes of FOR

We published the proceedings and outcomes of our first FOR meeting in 2014.
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Organize your own FOR symposium

FOR conferences are organized by grassroots scientists in their local areas.
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Our latest blog posts

US postdocs: Are you aware of the FLSA and salary changes coming Dec 1st?

On Dec 1st, the threshold at which salaried workers receive overtime payment for working more than 40 hours per week will increase from $23,660 to $47,476 per year, under updates to the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA).   All postdocs working in the U.S. who are not in a primarily teaching role, come under this ruling, regardless of visa or fellowship status. Therefore institutions who do not currently pay their postdocs above this threshold will either have to choose to track the hours of a postdoc, or to raise salaries to the new threshold.   It is currently our expectation that all institutions will choose to raise salaries rather than track hours – the cost will likely be less to the institution by avoiding administrative burden, and it runs counter to academic culture. However a recent survey and report suggests that there are institutions considering hours tracking and so we have decided to prepare resources for postdocs to provide as much information as possible.   All resources can be found in our new “Resources” section, on the “FLSA and postdocs” page. We are keeping track – and still asking for your help to do so – of what institutions are doing to comply with the federal labor law and will be updating this as information comes in.   Some of our newest resources include this talk by Executive Director Gary McDowell at Tufts, presenting his case on why he thinks no institution will track hours – the talk is freely available for use and downloading, the slides are available on the F1000Research FoR Channel and discussed here on Reddit. Please feel...

Less than a week til FoR Calgary meeting

In association with the University of Calgary Postdoctoral Association, the Future of Research Canada Alberta Workshop will be held next week on Monday September 26th from 1pm – 5pm at the Foothills Campus.   The keynote will be given by Dr. Pamela Valentine of Alberta Innovates Health Solutions and the afternoon will include breakout workshops similar to brainstorm improvements to the research enterprise.   There is still time to register here.  ...

Advocating For Science #AdvForSci2016 starts today!

The day of the Advocating for Science Symposium has finally arrived, with the workshops tomorrow! You can watch the meeting remotely using this link: http://webcast.mit.edu/fall2016/GSC/1637/5/ You can follow the meeting using the hashtag #AdvForSci on Twitter, and following @FORsymp and @SaveScience. The conference website is here for further information, but below you can find the program for today’s events:   Directions: Easiest entry is directly from Vasser Street into Building 34, due to the construction behind the building on campus. Building 34 has a triangular lobby into Vasser Street with a metal girder structure just inside the windows. Room 34-101 is straight ahead when you enter the revolving door.  ...

Updating resources for postdocs about salary changes Dec 1

We are updating our website with resources about the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) salary exemption changes and how they are affecting postdocs. We are still requesting information on what institutions are doing and encourage postdocs to send information on what their institution is doing – and whether the institution has involved postdoc associations and postdoc officers in the process.   Today (September 15) at 4pm EST Executive Director Gary McDowell will give a talk at Tufts on FoR and the FLSA and it will be live-streamed via Webex at http://bit.ly/FoR-Gary. The talk will be recorded, and both it and the slides will be made available soon.   You can read FoR’s statement on the FLSA ruling here....

Advocating for Science Travel Scholarships – Part 6: Interview with Elisa van der Plas

The “Advocating for Science” symposium and workshop is taking place at MIT September 16-17, 2016, to enable junior scientists to advocate for science. The purpose of the meeting is to give an opportunity to those with a passion for advocating for science to develop their advocacy skills, meet like-minded junior scientists and develop focused efforts together to effect positive change. To try to extend this meeting beyond the Boston area, we recently put out an application call for travel scholarships for attendees from further afield. Following interviews with our Kansas City Area Life Sciences Institute Travel Award Recipient, Alex Erwin, and Advocating for Science Travel recipients Holly Hamilton, Katherine Simeon, Adriana Bankston, Tess Eidem, and Sridhar Vedachalam, here is our final interview with Elisa van der Plas:     Tell us a little about your career path so far and what you are currently working on. I am currently a graduate student in Brain and Cognitive Science at the University of Amsterdam, with several ongoing research projects with labs at the University of Oxford and at Donders Institute of Brain, Behaviour and Cognition in Nijmegen. My research uses computational modelling and imaging techniques to investigate the neuronal fundaments of social decision-making, like moral decision-making and empathy-based attention reorientation. My obsession with developing research ideas on interdisciplinary boundaries originally started in Costa Rica, where I minored in biology at the capital’s university. The intensive program combined field trips in conservation areas (see picture) and governmental debates to experience the country’s radical environmental policy from both an administrative and academic perspective. This enabled my consideration of sustainability as being more than just the intrinsic value of nature, and helped...

Advocating for Science Travel Scholarships – Part 5: Interview with Sridhar Vedachalam

The “Advocating for Science” symposium and workshop is taking place at MIT September 16-17, 2016, to enable junior scientists to advocate for science. The purpose of the meeting is to give an opportunity to those with a passion for advocating for science to develop their advocacy skills, meet like-minded junior scientists and develop focused efforts together to effect positive change. To try to extend this meeting beyond the Boston area, we recently put out an application call for travel scholarships for attendees from further afield. Following interviews with our Kansas City Area Life Sciences Institute Travel Award Recipient, Alex Erwin, and Advocating for Science Travel recipients Holly Hamilton, Katherine Simeon, Adriana Bankston, and Tess Eidem, here is our next interview with Sridhar Vedachalam:     Sridhar Vedachalam is a Postdoctoral Fellow at the Johns Hopkins Water Institute at Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. His research is centered on water and wastewater infrastructure issues including assessment, planning, financing, use, and regulation. He is particularly interested in understanding how individuals and municipalities make decisions on water infrastructure. Sri received his PhD in Environmental Science and MS in Mechanical Engineering and Environmental Economics, all from The Ohio State University.   Tell us a little about your career path so far and what you are currently working on. I have had a convoluted path to where I am today. After my undergraduate degree in Mechanical Engineering, I worked for a year at India’s largest construction firm. I came to The Ohio State University for an MS in Mechanical Engineering, and during that time got involved in student advocacy and community activism. These engagements got me interested...