Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Fake CV #6

This (partial?) CV contains at least two possibly-puzzling elements one may encounter in publication lists. Depending on the (sub)field, these elements may be complete non-issues (may even be the norm) or may be Red Flags.

Robert "Bob" R. Smith

Science Department
Science University
Scienceville, SC

Employment History

Postdoctoral Research Associate, 2010-present, Science Department/University

Education History

PhD, 2010, Science, Department of Science, University of Science and Engineering
B.S., 2005, Science, Department of Science, Other University of Science and Engineering


A.X. White, T.R. Green, B.C. Black, K.E. Pink, R.R. Smith, N.I. Brown, V.C. Beige, and P.R. Taupe. The discovery of scientific evidence for some science things. J. Sci. Thi., v. 349, p. 12,345-12,399, 2012.

B.C. Black, A.X. White, T.R. Green, P.R. Taupe, K.E. Pink, R.R. Smith, N.I. Brown, and V.C. Beige. Scientific evidence for an engineered solution to some science questions in nature and experiment. Proc. Nat. Sci. and Eng. Stu., v. 1, p. 18-21, 2012.

R.W. Rabbit, H.F. Lizard, E.U. Dachshund, N.V. Worm, R.R. Smith, C.F. Sheepgoat, D.T. Rooster, and W.G. Dolphin. On the science of engineering, I. Theory. Trans. Theory Eng. Nat. Sci. Lett., v. 23, p. 556-572, 2011.

J.-P. Oak, D.D. Maple, C.V. Aspen, R.R. Smith, E.J. Birch, L.F. Pine, and E.S. Larch. Investigation of scientific results on a scientific experiment: implications for science. J. Exp. Sci. Res., v. 59, p. 47-95, 2011.

M.W. Cupcake, C.B. Brulee, W.D. Cheesecake, R.R. Smith, and V.B. Crumble. Evidence for scientific science in a vaccuum. J. Und. Sci. Res. Res., v. 16, p. 201-222, 2005.


michiexile said...

This is one of those CVs where I would dearly love an explanation of what we are meant to be seeing; what are the potential red flags?

martin said...

6 year gap between the first paper and next.
No first authorship

GMP said...

Ouch. Zero publications during PhD (that last one is more likely with fake undergrad mentor). Not a single first-author (or even second-author!) publication anywhere; only middle-author ones during postdoc.

Ouch ouch ouch.

Anonymous said...

In my sub-field the lack of first authored papers at that stage would definitely be problematic. This CV looks like one for a good tech but not a potential faculty member. I'm curious - in which fields would this be ok? I do love the co-author names though!

jlush2 said...

Is a Sheepgoat a thing?!

Anonymous said...

In biomedical science no-first author papers would be a red flag for a postdoc position and fatal for a faculty position.

Mark P

mathgirl said...

LOL! In (at least some areas of) mathematics, zero publication during PhD years is not a red flag at all! You're busy learning and producing hard math that may take a while to get published in (hopefully high) ranked journals. The gap would be totally normal. Also, since we tend to order authors alphabetically, not being a first author for someone called Smith is totally normal.

What looks weird from the math point of view is that the authors are not ordered alphabetically and that there are too many authors for each paper. That makes me think of other sciences, and that I should be careful and not assume the considerations of the previous paragraph.

RecapturedEastOfTheBigMuddy said...

> I'm curious - in which fields would this be ok?

It's almost OK in particle physics. The business with author lists on main papers being scores to thousands of people long.

But your research group should have some small papers derived from solving problems along the way (which may be in second tier journals), and a postdoc should get some first author papers in that category.

Anonymous said...

@ mathgirl: Yours was the first time I ever heard authors listed alphabetically.

I sat on a biochemistry grant committee with members from both biology and chemistry. The chemists said that in their field, the PI would always be first author as the citations are "BillyGoat et al" and they wanted everyone to know that it was their paper. This led to some confusion in the granting committee as the experience for the biologists was that PhD students and postdocs are first authors with PIs as the senior author and their names are last. We had to be careful that we weren't penalizing the chemistry students for "not getting a first author paper".

Has anyone had a similar experience?

Susan said...

What grabbed my eye, aside from the lack of 1st auth. and the 5-yr gap, was that the first two papers look like they could be essentially the same paper published twice.

... which I've seen often enough in my field lately as I've been digging up pubs for a seminar course. In those cases I know much better that they really are 90% of the same paper published twice.

Gina said...

Economics also lists authors alphabetically, not by PI. The lack of pubs during grad school would not be a factor.

What would be a giant red flag is the number of authors: if you're a fresh a grad student, having no single authored papers would be a major issue.

Anonymous said...

Yes, in math we list authors alphabetically. But the number of coauthors still might be problematic. For example, publications coming from a PhD thesis should either be single authored, or joint with your adviser, depending on the adviser and the field. Also it looks like the 6 year gap is due to the first paper being an undergrad research paper. Not sure whether that should be listed but I don't see why it hurts; it's just old.

Sesh Nadathur said...

In particle physics/cosmology, alphabetical order for author names is common - but not universal. This makes a catch-all rule based on number of first-author papers tricky.

But of course in the CV above, none of the author lists are in alphabetical order, so that doesn't apply here.

jenny said...

@10:27 anon

In chemistry, both in US and Canada, the norm is student/postdoc as first author (the person who did the research and presumably wrote at least a first draft), with the PI as the last author. Many moons ago in Eastern Europe we did the PI-first thingy. Don't know if that is still the norm.