Entries in jobs (2)


What recognition matters?

On the left is a screenshot from David Bromberg's Facebook page; I took a photo at his concert last night at the Colonial Theatre in Phoenixville, PA, and sent it to my friend Mark Cosgrove, the guitar/mandolin player in David's band. Mark asked me if they could post it on their Facebook page. I gladly agreed; I'm honored that they liked the photo.* In the first 5 hours, 165 strangers had "liked" the photograph, 18 people had "shared" my photo on their Facebook walls, and there were a number of very complementary comments.

On the right is the PsycInfo information on my most well-cited article (Le & Agnew, 2003...Our Investment Model meta-analysis; PsycInfo is the primary database for psychology journal articles). This paper was published a decade ago (coincidentally, exactly 10 years ago this month), and to date has been cited 153 times. I haven't gone through to talley up how many of those citations came from (a) me (probably about 10-15 of those are me citing that paper in my newer work), (b) colleagues I have done research with (maybe another 40 of those citations?), or (c) researchers in my field that I know personally (another 40 of those?). My guess is that there are about 50-60 people in the world who have stumbled upon that paper in their own research, without knowing me, and decided they like that paper enough to cite it in their own work.

Fifty people in TEN YEARS. Or 165 people in 5 hours? It's no surprise which one is more satisfying...

Update #1: In the time it took me to write this post, 7 more strangers liked my photo, but, to my knowledge, no new papers citing my article were added to PsycInfo.

Update #2: After a couple of days, the photo has been shared around 35 times and liked over 345 times (as far as I can see). 

*As an aside, at the last minute, on the way out the door, it dawned on me that taking my camera might be a good idea. I didn't know if photography would be allowed at the Colonial, but after seeing all of those people trying to take shots with their phones, I realized that with my X-Pro1 I'd be much less annoying/disruptive than everyone else trying to snap shots...


Top Jobs in an Alternate Universe

It's starting to sink in that I'm going to be a social psychology professor at a liberal arts college for the next 30 years (pending the performance of my retirement fund). Being on sabbatical this last year, after getting tenure, has allowed me to fantasize about what I'd be doing in an alternate universe. Of course, this list does not account for low pay, job (in)security, or physical danger...It's what I would want to do, not what would be practical/safe:

  • Documentary photographer or photojournalist. How amazing would it have been to be in Egypt this spring?
  • Photographer for professional cycling...You know, those guys that hang off the back of motorcycles zooming up and down the Alps with four cameras around their necks.
  • Graphic designer or web development, although then I'd be sitting in front of a computer even more than I do now, if that's even possible.
  • Luthier...I'm surprised how much I enjoyed the course I took at the Vermont School of Lutherie. I knew I'd like the class overall but didn't anticipate how much the actual work would suit me. Spending time carving braces and tap-tuning tops would be fantastic.
  • I admittedly have no experience in business, but running a shop specializing in vintage and boutique acoustic guitars would be a lot of fun. At least the part about hanging out with cool guitars would be fun; the running a business doesn't sound particularly appealing.
  • Design and constuction at Legoland. Enough said.
  • Be the guy to invent the next Facebook-like megahit, although I'd sell the startup once it was worth only 10 million and retire to travel, do photography, and build guitars.

The takehome message here is that I'm going to make a great retiree.