Download icon

Career choices of underrepresented and female postdocs in the biomedical sciences

  1. W Marcus Lambert  Is a corresponding author
  2. Martin T Wells
  3. Matthew F Cipriano
  4. Jacob N Sneva
  5. Juanita A Morris
  6. Linnie M Golightly
  1. Weill Cornell Medicine, United States
  2. Cornell University, United States
  3. Columbia University, United States
Feature Article
  • Cited 0
  • Views 1,129
  • Annotations
Cite this article as: eLife 2020;9:e48774 doi: 10.7554/eLife.48774

Abstract

The lack of diversity among faculty at universities and medical schools in the United States is a matter of growing concern. However, the factors that influence the career choices of underrepresented minority and female postdoctoral researchers have received relatively little attention. Here we report the results of a survey of 1284 postdocs working in the biomedical sciences in the US. Our findings highlight possible reasons why some underrepresented minority and female postdocs choose not to pursue careers in academic research, and suggest interventions that could be taken in the early stages of postdoctoral training to prevent this attrition of underrepresented groups.

Article and author information

Author details

  1. W Marcus Lambert

    Department of Medicine, Weill Cornell Medicine, New York, United States
    For correspondence
    wil2009@med.cornell.edu
    Competing interests
    The authors declare that no competing interests exist.
    ORCID icon "This ORCID iD identifies the author of this article:" 0000-0002-4592-5176
  2. Martin T Wells

    Department of Statistics and Data Science, Cornell University, Ithaca, United States
    Competing interests
    The authors declare that no competing interests exist.
  3. Matthew F Cipriano

    Weill Cornell Graduate School of Medical Sciences, Weill Cornell Medicine, New York, United States
    Competing interests
    The authors declare that no competing interests exist.
  4. Jacob N Sneva

    Weill Cornell Graduate School of Medical Sciences, Weill Cornell Medicine, New York, United States
    Competing interests
    The authors declare that no competing interests exist.
  5. Juanita A Morris

    Teachers College, Columbia University, New York, United States
    Competing interests
    The authors declare that no competing interests exist.
  6. Linnie M Golightly

    Department of Medicine, Weill Cornell Medicine, New York, United States
    Competing interests
    The authors declare that no competing interests exist.

Funding

National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences (Award Number UL1TR002384)

  • W Marcus Lambert
  • Matthew F Cipriano
  • Jacob N Sneva
  • Linnie M Golightly

National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (K24 AI110732)

  • Linnie M Golightly

The funders had no role in study design, data collection and interpretation, or the decision to submit the work for publication.

Ethics

Human subjects: All work was done under the approval of the Weill Cornell Medicine Institutional Review Board (IRB# 1612017849), and all respondents provided consent for participation in the study.

Reviewing Editor

  1. Julia Deathridge, eLife, United Kingdom

Publication history

  1. Received: July 3, 2019
  2. Accepted: January 2, 2020
  3. Accepted Manuscript published: January 3, 2020 (version 1)

Copyright

© 2020, Lambert et al.

This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License permitting unrestricted use and redistribution provided that the original author and source are credited.

Metrics

  • 1,129
    Page views
  • 328
    Downloads
  • 0
    Citations

Article citation count generated by polling the highest count across the following sources: Crossref, PubMed Central, Scopus.

Download links

A two-part list of links to download the article, or parts of the article, in various formats.

Downloads (link to download the article as PDF)

Download citations (links to download the citations from this article in formats compatible with various reference manager tools)

Open citations (links to open the citations from this article in various online reference manager services)