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From the archive: Can a research career be planned?

Guidance on how much of a pinch of salt to take with any careers advice

We live in an uncertain world. Researchers work in a competitive, challenging sector, where opportunities seem to be getting ever thinner on the ground. This being the case, should careers advice stop at ‘do your best and see what happens’?

This is the question that senior lecturer in research education and development at La Trobe University, Australia, sought to answer in this column first published in January 2017. Her answer is that yes, some planning is worthwhile, but staying true to a less meticulously planned general orientation may be even more valuable.

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