9th Conference European Sociological Association

RN24 Science and Technology

2009-09-05 13:30:00 2009-09-05 15:00:00 Saturday, 5 September 13:30 - 15:00 Scientific Careers and Productivity Building AA, AA.225

Career paths, scientific productivity and academic rewards

Based on the survey responses and publications' data of 1583 academic scientists in several fields affiliated with a Spanish university or with the Higher Council for Scientific Research (CSIC), this paper examines the relationship between scientific performance and reward, considering tenure as a key academic reward and looking at the mediating effect of mobile versus non mobile career paths. Although an extended practice in many academic systems across the world, inbreeding has been often considered as conflicting with the norm of universalism and the rule of merit in science. By using regression analyses, our findings indicate that inbred faculty does not get tenure with less scientific merits than Ph.D.s from other institutions. However we also find that non mobile careers are a strong and significant predictor of the timing of rewards in the form of early permanent positions. Our results question the assumption, rooted in the open competitive model of the academic job market, that mobility enhances career. We argue that these findings must be interpreted in the context of organizational, institutional and structural features that promote the development of internal academic job markets.