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Moving Out Of Academic Research: Why Scientists Stop Doing Research?

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This study examines the determinants of exit from academic research which occurs when academic researchers move into positions in academe which concentrate on non-research activities such as teaching or administration, or when researchers leave academia and move into industry. Drawing on career data for 13,500 Japanese PhD graduates in hard sciences (all scientific fields except social sciences and humanities), we develop a set of econometric models to test the determinants of exit from a career in academic research. We find that academics’ scientific productivity and academic network are negatively correlated with abandoning a university research career, and that female academics, and researchers in less-prestigious universities, tend to exit academic research more easily. Individual and institutional network effects play a role mainly for senior researchers. The results indicate also that the determinants of exit are contingent on scientific field and career stage.

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  • Geuna, Aldo & Shibayama, Sotaro, 2015. "Moving Out Of Academic Research: Why Scientists Stop Doing Research?," Department of Economics and Statistics Cognetti de Martiis. Working Papers 201503, University of Turin.
  • Handle: RePEc:uto:dipeco:201503
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    Cited by:

    1. D. Checchi & S. Cicognani & N. Kulic, 2015. "Gender quotas or girls’ networks? Towards an understanding of recruitment in the research profession in Italy," Working Papers wp1047, Dipartimento Scienze Economiche, Universita' di Bologna.
    2. Stapleton, Lee & Sorrell, Steve & Schwanen, Tim, 2016. "Estimating direct rebound effects for personal automotive travel in Great Britain," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 54(C), pages 313-325.
    3. Fudickar, Roman & Hottenrott, Hanna & Lawson, Cornelia, 2016. "What’s the price of consulting? Effects of public and private sector consulting on academic research," Department of Economics and Statistics Cognetti de Martiis. Working Papers 201603, University of Turin.
    4. Wang, Jian & Lee, You-Na & Walsh, John P., 2018. "Funding model and creativity in science: Competitive versus block funding and status contingency effects," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 47(6), pages 1070-1083.
    5. Fernandez-Zubieta, Ana & Geuna, Aldo & Lawson, Cornelia, 2015. "What do We Know of the Mobility of Research Scientists and of its Impact on Scientific Production," Department of Economics and Statistics Cognetti de Martiis. Working Papers 201522, University of Turin.

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    JEL classification:

    • O31 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights - - - Innovation and Invention: Processes and Incentives
    • I23 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Higher Education; Research Institutions
    • J24 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Human Capital; Skills; Occupational Choice; Labor Productivity

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