• March 29, 2017
March 29, 2017, 1:03:33 pm *
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Author Topic: How soon is too soon for Talks on Overall Topic  (Read 8085 times)
New member
Posts: 15

« on: January 03, 2017, 12:59:50 pm »

I'm a 1st year postdoc and am hoping to eventually bring a new area of research into my current clinical field to answer translational questions. Since my postdoc is in this new area, no one in my field has any current knowledge on the topic.

My question is whether I should begin to present "reviews" or overview talks on this topic in general now or wait until after I've published more research?  I see the benefit of giving a talk like this at a clinical conference, but I also see a disadvantage of "jumping the gun" before I've become any kind of expert in this area.

Thoughts? Suggestions for paving my path early or later on when I'm move developed?
Distinguished Senior Member
Posts: 3,727

« Reply #1 on: January 04, 2017, 1:07:44 am »

In my experience, it is difficult to convince people to learn a new set of tools or techniques unless you can make a compelling case that fundamental questions which are of interest to them cannot be addressed using the current set of tools and techniques. In particular, this requires an intimate knowledge of the existing research based on the current techniques and their limitations. It takes quite a measure of gravitas and credibility to be able to convey that kind of message.
Senior member
Posts: 569

« Reply #2 on: January 21, 2017, 2:31:19 pm »

+1 to what mleok has said and I would add that legit "gravitas" will come primarily from your body of research so the best you can do is build a strong track record of publications in the topic.
practice makes perfect
Distinguished Senior Member
Posts: 27,665

Have you worked on that project today?

« Reply #3 on: January 22, 2017, 7:51:09 am »

Be really, really, really sure that no one in your field knows about these particular tools.  I was embarrassed for an acquaintance in my academic family tree when he gave a presentation earnestly explaining a really basic technique to a room containing people who regularly published on that technique in sister journals to the ones that were devoted specifically to our subsubsubfield (think publishing in citrus journals even though we identify as grapefruit researchers).

I have also heard the story from multiple sources about someone who pioneered a technique in our grapefruit field and was later invited to a big awards ceremony for contributions to the field who not only didn't consider themselves a grapefruit researcher, but told the inviters that the couple papers considered seminal in our field were one-off papers from the researcher's real interest that were only published because he was seeking tenure so needed papers, but he was trying to bury them in journals no one read.  He was stunned by the invitation 20 years later because clearly those papers were too theoretical to ever matter to anyone.

I've joined a bizarre cult called JordanCanonicalForm's Witnesses.  I have to go from door to door asking people things like, "Good evening, sir!  Do you have a moment to chat about Linear Transformations?"
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