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It’s time to recognise the diversity of research careers


Research evaluation values leadership and excellence, putting those with specialist skills at a disadvantage

Academic career paths are often thought of as homogenous trajectories, particularly when assessed by funding agencies and other organisations evaluating research. But simply grading success through scientific excellence or academic leadership ignores the diversity of roles and activities that researchers perform.

This fixation on excellence and leadership is an example of the ‘halo effect’, where it is believed that excelling in research performance means researchers will automatically excel in other activities, such as teaching or social outreach. But whether this is actually the case is up for debate.

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