Research Dilemma: Research Stars and Research Monsters

It is not a coincidence that all undergraduates in CS want a career in the industry and do not wish to go for postgraduate studies, research careers or academic careers. The obvious failure everywhere on earth and lack of transparency of managing conferences, journals, academic recruitment and promotion system, is visible to students, and probably their parents. 

Obvious failures that I have seen lately:

  1. When high impact journals ask researchers for source code of a paper they rejected, they expose their intensions about selling work done by others. The system that does not monitor the protocols of acceptance and rejection, and impact factors is failing.
  2. When journals or conference organisers send wrong conditional acceptance and reviewers’ comments, and then on the camera ready give another comment on the border line, but say the deadline is over, as if the first one does not count, and people effort and time is not worth the respect by the system. 
  3. When funding goes to the research stars and celebrities with connections only, and everyone see clearly that their rejected proposals were of higher value than the accepted ones, they will not be able to write another proposal to a closed system to connections only.
  4. When academic recruitment and promotion is not following a transparent set of rules that is applied on everyone equally, the system is losing credibility.
  5. When research postgraduate students see low quality thesis and dissertations gets accepted fast, and good work get scrutinised and being requested to add more to already finished research, they do understand, but they give the extra work, because they can, and because the system is exposed.
  6. When postgraduate students cancel their enrolment and run to the industry saying, “research make me feel stupid”, a sentence I heard before, it is because of the stupid comments they received on their work. They do not lose confidence in their skills; they lose their respect to the system that enables stupid comments to be exchanged in academia.
  7. The failure on the research methods and evaluations is visible due to the dominance by social sciences methods on all other disciplines. The scientific people are forced to go by artistic rules and drop long existing scientific methods to get recognition to their work. The system who drops a working method for a failing method is not sustainable.

The loss seems like it is on the side of the unprivileged and unconnected researchers. However, the loss is seriously on the whole system. You are losing talent and motivation by young people who could have made a contribution, when they see people working hard not being given their worth. No one will work hard, and everyone will see connections and relationships are all that matters. Advancements will slow down and will halt, because it is usually done by the unprivileged. It’s a cycle; those giving the stupid comments now, and the generations they are breeding, will not be able to maintain it this way.

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