The Gift of Good Advice

Everyone trying to navigate the sometimes-treacherous terrain of a graduate school, postdoctoral, or professorial career needs a wise and available counselor. Some people are fortunate enough to have one in the form of a caring and involved mentor. But for those who don’t—and even some who do—the next best thing may be a new book, , by Martin H. Krieger, a professor of planning at the University of Southern California and a longtime blogger on academic matters. Because he holds a Ph.D. in physics and is a fellow of the American Physical Society and author of a book on physics, he understands science and scientists.

Krieger has compiled many of his blog posts into an astute handbook that would make a perfect gift for the academics on your list—from grad student to department chair—or even for yourself. Composed of many short essays, the book is, Krieger writes, “meant for grazing, not for reading all the way through.” [Italics in original].  Readers should “open up the book anywhere and start reading” about topics that suit their particular interest.

This is a book to keep handy for when you need its sage perspective, which, given the strains of academic careers, will likely be often.

Elsewhere in Science, 6 December 2013

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