Broken Femurs and Cracked Backs: An Ethnography of Thai Motorcycle Safety

Introduction We arrived in Thailand last Thursday to visit our daughter Kirsten who teaches English in a Thai school. Within a half hour of arrival we were informed that she had just had an accident. She was driving her scooter near a Thai market in the small city of Phrae, when a “white car” backed … Continue reading Broken Femurs and Cracked Backs: An Ethnography of Thai Motorcycle Safety

How are the Minds of PhD Students “Disciplined” by Graduate School?

Thinking about getting a PhD? Disciplined Minds by Jeff Schmidt is the book to read. Already getting a PhD, ditto. Already have a PhD?   You should also read this book, even though it was published way back in 2000, and relies on data from the 1980s and 1990s. It applies to today as well—little has … Continue reading How are the Minds of PhD Students “Disciplined” by Graduate School?

Is an NSF Grant Just Another Cult Fetish?

I made a somewhat off-hand comment one of Ryan’s posts about graduate education on Savage Minds.Org some time ago.  I warned graduate students about “fetishizing” various types of grant sources like NSF, NIMH, Fulbright, and the various others sources of grad student funding which students compete to get.  This initially got me a deserved sharp … Continue reading Is an NSF Grant Just Another Cult Fetish?

Boldly go Towards Collaboration

Nicholas A Christakis' story in the NY Times is serious food for thought. Christakis starts "Let’s Shake Up the Social Sciences" with the following: TWENTY-FIVE years ago, when I was a graduate student, there were departments of natural science that no longer exist today. Departments of anatomy, histology, biochemistry and physiology have disappeared, replaced by … Continue reading Boldly go Towards Collaboration