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PhD Talk

Author: Eva Lantsoght

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A podcast in which we discuss PhD life, research mechanics, and the tools for doing research.
45 Episodes
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In today's episode, we interview Dr. Lena Karvovskaya. Lena did herPhD in theoretical linguistics at Leiden University. After her PhD, she took up a job as a data manager at Utrecht University Library and then went to the library of VU Amsterdam to become a community manager for research data management. We learn from Lena's research on endangered languages during her Master's studies and her work on possession in languages during her PhD. We also look at the role of a community manager within the modern university library, and the changing role of the library in the university. A third topic of the episode is data management: common pitfalls novice researchers should avoid, tips for current doctoral candidates, and tips for their advisors.Finally, we round off with our standard questions on the impact of COVID-19 on the Lena's daily tasks, her best advice for PhD candidates, a day in the life, and how to set boundaries to work.ReferencesLena’s Twitter profileEndangered languages: Sorbian, Saami languages, Ishkashimi  Lena’s PhD Thesis: The typology and formal semantics of adnominal possessionPodcast episode 29: Open access Podcast episode 25: Open science VU systematic reviews Podcast episode 17: Systematic reviewsVU Data ConversationsData steward at VU Amsterdam   More about Data stewards in the Netherlands, for example at TU Delft Data management at VU Amsterdam    Data management at Utrecht UniversityVU Data horror week  Data horror stories collected in 2020 A blog post about Data Horror Escape Room Play the Data Horror Escape Room at your own pace
In today's episode, Rico interviews Eva on the research she did with a group of international colleagues on the impact of COVID-19 on academic parents.We discuss the main findings of the research, that show that the negative impact on the research of academic parents is considerable, that most academic parents found more challenges than opportunities, and that associate professors are dealing with COVID-19 on top of the mid-career minefield. Another interesting finding is that both academic mothers and fathers have experienced negative impacts, even though academic mothers worked on average less hours but the gender differences related to time expenditure were larger before the pandemic than during. We also look into some regional differences, such as the larger fear to send children back to school in Central and South America than in other parts of the world.Besides the findings, we also discuss the methodology: how Eva assembled the international research team, how the team held Zoom meetings across many time zones to discuss the findings, and the quantitative and qualitative analysis methods that we selected for this work.Then, we turn in to Eva's personal experience as an academic parent during COVID-19, and see if her personal experience is in line with the findings in the paper, and what the main challenges were. We also look at the particular support measures Eva's two universities provided, and how she used these (or not). Then, we round off discussing how COVID-19 will affect academic parents in the future and if we can take positive lessons from this experience into the future.References:Lantsoght EOL, Tse Crepaldi Y, Tavares SG, Leemans K and Paig-Tran EWM (2021) Challenges and Opportunities for Academic Parents During COVID-19. Front. Psychol. 12:645734. doi: 10.3389/fpsyg.2021.645734WonkHe: How to support academic parents to succeed PhD Talk for AcademicTransfer: The Challenges of Parenting and Academia
In today's episode, we interview Dr. Jennifer Polk, who has a PhD in history (2012) and has been working as a career coach and consultant since 2013. She is an expert on  the challenges PhDs face transitioning to employment.We learn from Jen how she went from being a PhD in history to a career coach, and what her research back then has in common with the work she does nowadays. She explains us the different steps one should go through when starting to think about a career after the PhD (spoiler alert: self-reflection is incredibly important).We also talk about what supervisors and universities can do to give more attention to life after the PhD during graduate school, and hear Jen's recommendations for books with career advice.Finally, we talk about a day in the life, the impact of COVID-19 on Jen's work, how she sets boundaries to work, and her best advice for PhD candidates.Where to find Jennifer Polk onlineWebsiteTwitterFacebook PageLinkedInUniversity Affairs blogNewsletter (the PhD Career Clarity course will be announced through the newsletter) Degrees of Success Reading recommendationsWhat color is your parachute (updated by Katherine Brooks) Karen Kelsky - The Professor is In Hillary Hutchinson - Scaling the ivory tower Leaving academia - Christopher Catherine So what are you going to do with that? - Susan Basalla Career advice blogs on Inside Higher Ed Carpe Career column Jennifer’s curated reading listOther resources mentioned in this episodeLauren Easterling - list of jobs / career paths in biomedical sciences Council of graduate schools Canadian association of graduate studies  CAGS' Upcoming conference: Care, Social justice, and Inclusion in Graduate Studies Graduate career consortium GPDN Graduate and Professional Development Network 
In today's episode, we discuss Rico's experience in replying to the comments of the reviewers on his first journal article.We discuss the timeline between submission and receiving the comments, as well as what one can expect from various journals here. We also discuss the time it takes to implement reviewer comments and write the rebuttal, as well as the process Rico and his colleagues followed. Their approach (and what Eva uses) is based on working through the comments sequentially, but other authors may prefer to work by topic.Rico's paper got comments from five reviewers, and we discuss how common it is to receive comments from this many reviewers. We also delve into the way a rebuttal can be formatted - the Excel template Rico used, as well as the Word file with different styles of formatting that Eva uses.We round of this episode with Rico's lessons learned and best practices.ReferencesPrevious episode on writing a journal article How not to be reviewer 2 When reviewers want you to cite their workReviewers’ comments 
In today's episode, we interview Dr. Marissa Edwards from the UQ Business School at the University of Queensland, Australia. One of the topics she has worked on, is mental health and well-being in students and educators, which is the main topic of today's episode.Join us to learn more about Marissa's research on whistle-blowing, medical negligence, and mental health and well-being in students and educators.  We dive deep into the topics on mental health in academia: where the current problems come from, and what we can do to improve the situation.Finally, we learn about Marissa's best advice for PhD supervisors and PhD candidates, the influence of COVID-19 on her daily tasks, and a typical day in the life.Where to find Marissa online:TwitterUniversity profileLinkedInVoices of Academia blog & Twitter Marissa's researchHow Perceptions and Emotions Shaped Employee Silence in the Case of “Dr. Death” at Bundaberg HospitalPublications on Google Scholar Journal of Management Education -  editorial  Emotions and failure in academic lifeSocial and Emotional Learning in Graduate School to Improve Student Well-Being and Performance: A Proposed Training ProgramSupporting student psychological well-being in the I-O psychology classroomAdditional resourcesMedical negligence Dr. Death Journal of Management Education  Special Issue: “Mental Health and Psychological Well-Being Among Management Students and Educators”PhD balance Cactus mental health Dragonfly mental wellness Brene Brown - Daring Greatly, The Gifts of Imperfection, Rising Strong,  Dare to Lead 
In today's episode, we address a number of questions that our listeners sent in through Twitter and other sources. Here's a list of topics we touched upon in this mixed mailbag episode:our current work,our summer goals, and how much of it we achieved,our plans for the fall semester,our potential plans for conference travel,leaving industry to start working on research, and what that means in terms of salary,a week in the life of PhD candidacy,any preconceived ideas we had about the PhD or academia that turned out not to be true,skills every PhD candidate should have, andour favorite books read in 2021 so farWe are happy to receive your questions and answer these in a future Q&A episode!ReferenceAutomate the Boring Stuff with Python - Al Sweigart + Udemy courseSummer goals post Corry Doctorow - Walkaway Maya Angelou - I know why the caged bird sings Charles Dickens  - A Tale of Two Cities Andy Weir - Project Hail Mary 
In today's episode,  we interview Dr. Ashley Hughes, Assistant Professor at the University of Illinois at Chicago and a Research Health Scientist at the Edward Hines JR VA Medical Center. She received her doctoral degree in Applied Experimental Human Factors Psychology in 2016 and Masters in Modeling and Simulation in 2013 from the University of Central Florida. Her research extends human factors in health informatics to improve work processes, such as technology uptake and data use, to enhance coordination of care. Her work is widely published, is currently funded by NIH institutes, and her work is recognized by various local and national awards. We discuss Ashley's research on the use (and barriers to use) of technology in medicine, as well as some of the surprising findings from her work and link to physician burnout. The main portion of the episode is dedicated to the topic of student debt: how to avoid student debt by getting PhD funding, the long-term consequences of student debt, as well as the experience of Ashley herself, and her observations on what has changed between when she did her PhD and today. We also discuss her best advice with regard to funding the PhD for current and future PhD candidates, as well as their supervisors.Finally, we round off with our general questions on setting boundaries, the influence of COVID-19 on her work and daily tasks, and what a day in the life looks like for Ashley (and the role of coffee in a day in the life).Where to find Ashley Hughes and her work onlineAshley’s university profileGoogle scholar profileResearchgate profile Twitter profileReferences to topics discussedTaking Action Against Clinician Burnout: A Systems Approach to Professional Well-Being. National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine 2019. Electronic Health Record Usability Issues and Potential Contribution to Patient Harm  - Howe et al. 2018 Kaiser Health News - Death by a thousand clicks The T32 and Individual awards: from NIH and from NSFLoan repayment plan
In today's episode we continue on the topic of the literature review. In previous episodes, we discussed our reading habits, and today we take a deeper dive into what comes after reading all these interesting articles: writing the literature review. This episode focuses on writing the literature review section for a journal article as well as writing the literature review chapter of the PhD thesis.We discuss several ways of processing the information from the articles we read, and how to structure this information into a coherent review. We also discuss what literature reviews are not, and some common pitfalls in writing a literature review. We round off with a discussion on what is important in writing a literature review, and some tips from the perspective of a reviewer and journal editor.ReferencesEpisode 14: Reading the literatureEpisode 16: How to search for articlesEpisode 17: Systematic reviews: interview with Jonathan GuillemotEndnoteZoteroMendeleyPapersBibtexRaul Pacheco-Vega: Delving into an entirely new topic and doing a literature review, performed with an example (on hospital ethnography)Raul Pacheco-Vega: Writing your literature review based on the “Cross-Reference” column of the Conceptual Synthesis Excel Dump (CSED)Raul Pacheco-Vega: Literature reviews, annotated bibliographies and conceptual synthetic tablesPhD Talk: Organizing your literature reviewPhD Talk: Top 3 tips for literature review success
In today's episode, we interview Dr. Hao-Ting Wang. She is a Postdoc Fellow at University of Sussex and Brighton and Sussex Medical School. Originally from Taiwan, she completed her BSc in Psychology in National Chengchi University, and then a PhD in Cognitive Neuroscience at University of York, UK. Her work involves brain-behavioral phenotypes discovery using functional MRI in large open access datasets. Working with large neuroimaging datasets ignited her interests in computation reproducibility. She is an active contributor of Python libraries Nilearn, Nibabel and Pydra. We discuss her career path and recent research, as well as how she gained her interest in machine learning throughout her research. We get an insight in her findings on what our brain does while our mind is wandering.The main topic of today's episode is how to finance PhD studies, and the government loan that Hao-Ting used for this purpose. We also discuss the long-term implications of taking a loan for studies, and how this choice influenced the daily life and activities available to Hao-Ting.Finally, we round off with our standard questions on boundary settings, day in the life, impact of COVID-19 and best advice.References Hao-Ting's githubHao-Ting's TwitterHao-Ting's Google ScholarPythonBored and Brilliant Default mode network Task negativeBrainhack collaborativeERC grants
In today's episode, we discuss how to select the right journal for your article. When it comes to selecting a journal, we discuss how to get the right advice and which tools you can use to decide where to send your article.We also discuss other topics to consider when selecting a journal: time to decision, indexation, copyright, open access, and other aspects that can be important for you to make a decision.We then round off with a discussion with our best tips for making your article as suitable as possible for the journal you have selected - from carefully checking scope and audience to practical tips such as using the right template.ReferencesElsevier journal finder JANEAmeliCASherpa/ RomeoRedalycScopusISI Web of Science
In today's episode of the podcast, we interview Horacio Perez Sanchez, who is a professor in Spain and host of the podcast Investigando la investigacion. He is the principal investigator of the "Bioinformatics and High Performance Computing" Research Group at the Universidad Catolica San Antonio de Murcia.We talk about his background, and current research. We also learn how much computing power his research requires, and how he finds this computing power available - methods that currently are popular and methods that were used in the past.We also learn more about academia in Spain, and what Horacio's days typically look like, as well as how becoming a parent changed his working style.ReferencesInvestigando la investigacion Research group website Free bioinformatics toolsTime blockingGetting things doneTrelloAsanaWeekly reviewLean management techniques
In today's episode, we discuss Rico's experience of writing his first journal article. We discuss how much of the research was done before Rico and his coauthors started writing the paper. We also learn about their co-creation process of writing in work sessions through videoconferencing.Another topic we discuss is what Rico experienced as the easiest and hardest parts of the process, as well as how much time the group of authors took to write the article.In addition, we discussed the steps of the manuscript submission system, and some particularities of some journals such as requiring a cover letter and suggesting reviewers.We round off discussing what Rico might have done different in hindsight.At the end of the episode, Rico asks Eva about her experience in writing her first journal paper, and what she remembers of the process. For Eva, writing the first paper was certainly a longer process than for Rico.ReferencesInkscapePhD Talk for AcademicTransfer: Don’t make these nine mistakes when you write a journal paperFrom PhD Thesis to Journal Papers
In today's episode, we interview David Cañarte, who recently got his PhD in the department of Sociology and Criminology & Law at the University of Florida. David, who is originally from Ecuador, has a background in design and marketing. He has studied in Ecuador, the Netherlands, and the United States.We talk about David's meandering career path, and how his path and his wife's path have developed over these years. We also learn about David's research on social networks of immigrants, and how he shifted to this topic. Then, we dive into the methods that David used during his doctoral research and discuss the tools he used for this purpose. We also learn the complications David faced for his data analysis as a result of COVID-19 lockdowns, and how his work was impacted by the situation in his home country.After managing to finish his PhD during the global pandemic, David was faced with the challenge of defending his doctoral research online. We learn his best tips for defending through videoconferencing.Finally, we round off the interview with a discussion on how to set boundaries to work, and learn how academic couples can set boundaries together. We learn David's best advice for PhD candidates, and -closely related to setting boundaries- get a glimpse at the day in the life of David.ReferencesJoseph O.Baker, David Cañarte,and L. Edward Day. 2018. “Race, Xenophobia, and Punitiveness Among the American Public” The Sociological Quarterly 59(3):363-383.Raffaele Vacca, David Cañarte & Tommaso Vitale (2021) Beyond ethnic solidarity: the diversity and specialisation of social ties in a stigmatised migrant minority, Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies, DOI: 10.1080/1369183X.2021.1903305David's profile on the website of the University of FloridaMore about David's doctoral research in SpanishFollow David on TwitterHow to prepare for a Zoom vivaRIgraphIgor
In today's episode, we take a deep dive into the topic of research in difficult times. We look at how COVID-19 has impacted our research and how we work - a topic we've also previously discussed with our guests on the podcast. We discuss what worked to keep going, or how to keep doing some work in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic. Our best advice for dealing with difficult times is:Learn to take stock of the situation and acknowledge the difficulty of the situationPractice self-compassionLean on the support that others can provide youActively reach out to others to check in and see how they are doingWe round off our recording with some speculations on what the future of (tele)work may look like.ReferencesEva's course on research in difficult timesPhD research in difficult timesLife in times of COVID-19 in EcuadorSupporting PhD candidates during COVID-19COVID-19 and researchChallenges and opportunities for international researchers during COVID-19Born to run - Christopher McDougallSelf-compassion and diet researchMore research on self-compassion
In today's episode, we interview Baris Celik from the School of Politics and International Relations at the University of Kent. In his PhD research, Baris examines the crisis management operations of the European Union (EU) and North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO). We learned about the research of Baris, his findings with regard to what drives certain policy decisions in situations of international conflict, as well as how he conducted the semi-structured interviews for his research and how he found his research participants.We also learn about how Baris has been combining research and teaching, and his best advice for those who embark on research using qualitative methods. We get an overview of what the timeline of the PhD looks like in politics in the UK. To round off the interview, we also learn how Baris sets boundaries to work, how COVID-19 has impacted his daily tasks, his best advice for PhD students, and what a day in the life looks like.ReferencesAssistant Lecturer profile at the School of Politics & International Relations,  University of KentORCID profile(2021). The “5,000-kilometre screwdriver”: German and French police training in Afghanistan through the EU and NATO, Global Affairs, (online first). (2020). Foreign policy decision-making in operational overlap: the UK’s policing assistance in Afghanistan through the EU and NATO, European Security 29(4), pp. 456-482.Baris' blog on research and teaching experiencesQualitative Research Guidelines Project:  Semi-Structured InterviewsDesigning a semi-structured interview guide for qualitative interviews
In this episode, we address a variety of questions from listeners:How is research similar to content creation? (blog, podcast, Instagram) How have you seen academic parenting evolving through the years you've been in academia? I have the feeling that now it has become more accepted (comparing to when I was an undergrad)Which advice would you give your younger self?We also discuss our plans for the summer, and ask each other the questions we've been asking our interviewees: What is your best piece of advice for PhD students?How has Covid-19 changed your job and daily tasks?ReferencesOn Writing Well by William ZinsserDaily Rituals: Women at Work by Mason CurreyOn writing: A memoir of the craft by Stephen KingDoing a PhD is Getting to Know Yourself - The Thesis WhispererThe quote about writing a long or short letter
We are back with another episode on Open Science. In this episode, we interview Frederique Belliard and Just de Leeuwe from the Delft University of Technology library on open access publishing: from the perspective of the TU Delft library which encourages researchers to publish open access and from the perspective of the TU Delft publishing house.Listen to this episode to learn about how Frederique made the shift from research in an academic context to being in touch with research as a publisher, and how Just made the transition from working with information of the Rotterdam pollution maps to work as a librarian. You will also learn about their best advice for selecting an open access journal to publish your research, as well as important things to consider with regard to the copyright of your work.In this episode, we also learn how to get started with open access publishing if your advisor may be hesitant, the best advice for PhD candidates from Frederique and Just, how COVID-19 impacted their daily tasks, and what a day in the life looks like for them.References:Open access journal browser of TU Delft Beal’s list of predatory journals, archived version Think check submit DOAJ4 TU repository for data MOOC TU Delft library website Zenodo (Eva’s database of shear in steel fiber reinforced concrete beams) TU Delft open publishing Open Access policy of TU Delft TU Delft Open Access Funding Open Access Publishing at TU Delft Open Access in the Netherlands The Informed Researcher, Course for PhD candidates at TU Delft Copyright advice TU Delft Open Access deals with publishers Research identity Archiving and digitizing How to publish data Plan S 
In today's episode, we discuss our use of analog and digital tools. First, we discuss where we use analog tools and where we use digital tools. We then go into the advantages of these different tools. We also go off on a tangent on keyboard styles and how this influences how we type (and thus, how we write). Finally, we give some advice on how to select your tools for the purpose you have in mind, and how to come to systems that work for you.The tiny voice in the background is Eva's daughter wanting to chip in today :)References and links:Leuchtturm 1917Andaluz and Estilo notebooksKeeping your lab and research notes organizedHow to find your planning and project management toolsWhat planning tools are most popular?Qwerty keyboard (check also the slightly different Spanish Latin American sort)Azerty keyboardBlue light-blocking glasses
In today's episode, we interview Dr. Nosipho Makhakhe from the University of KwaZulu-Natal in South Africa. She holds a PhD in humanities, more specifically in health promotion. We were eager to learn more about her use of qualitative methods and her research in particular.You will learn in this episode more about Nosipho's research with sex workers, her recommendations for qualitative work in vulnerable communities, and the surprising findings of her research that came from truly listening to the sex workers and their stories. We also learned more about what it is like to do a PhD in South Africa, and their written form of the PhD defense. Finally, we also discuss how to set boundaries to work and protecting our mental health, get to learn about how COVID-19 impacted Nosipho's life and research, her best advice for PhD students, and what a day in the life looks like.ReferencesDr. Nosipho Makhakhe's publicationsSituation analysis  Situation analysis in qualitative methodsFocus groupsHow to use focus groups to evaluate your digital health productInterviews in qualitative research Co-creation in dialogue groups National research foundation (South Africa)
In today's episode, we discuss the so-called imposter syndrome, which is generally defined as having feelings of not deserving what you have achieved despite external evidence of the contrary. However, calling this feeling a "syndrome" actually pathologizing a rational reaction to being in a hierarchical, competitive place like a university, surrounded by high achievers (as Patter pointed out correctly). With these definitions and observations in place, we embark on a personal episode, in which we touch upon when we have felt and feel like an imposter, when we feel a sense of not belonging, and similar but different experiences in academia. Besides discussing these feelings and experiences, as well as how they have changed over the years, we also discuss some tips that have helped us move forward even when facing such emotions.ReferencesImposter syndrome is not real, but I call mine Beryl (Thesis Whisperer)The top 5 PhD emotions (Thesis Whisperer)Two things that made me thing this week (Patter)Feeling like an imposter is not a syndromeDr. Pauline Rose Clan´s work on this topicThe Imposter Syndrome: Why successful people often feel like frauds by Hugh KearnsEva documented some of her observations on such feelings over the past on her blog:How I got tenureSurviving and thriving as a young female academicPerforming for TEDxDelftSalonOn where PhD research gets publishedWho am I to speak up
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