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The Joy of Science
Seven Principles for Scientists Seeking Happiness, Harmony, and Success


  • Date Published: July 2016
  • availability: In stock
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9781316509005
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About the Authors
  • We live in an age where working in science or engineering offers tremendous professional opportunities - the pace of scientific development is truly breathtaking. Yet many researchers struggle with the pressures of the fast-paced academic workplace, and struggle to harmonize their work and personal lives. The result can be burnout, exhaustion, and stress on a personal level, and difficulty in recruiting and retaining talented, diverse people to science and engineering. This book, written for graduate students and researchers at all stages of their careers, aims to help scientists by identifying and questioning the core beliefs that drive a culture of overwork, and provides real-world examples and exercises for those wishing to do things differently. Written in a lively narrative style, and including interview excerpts from practicing scientists, social scientists, and engineers, this book serves as a guide for those seeking to practice the seven traits of the joyful scientist.

    • Makes the reader aware of the personal and collective beliefs about what it means to be a successful scientist
    • Offers practical suggestions and ideas for leading a balanced life while thriving in a scientific career
    • Offers anecdotes from scientists that illustrate and deepen the material covered
    • Exercises invite the reader to reflect and explore alternative approaches to living the life of a scientist
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    Reviews & endorsements

    'In these times where scientists are under increasing pressure to prove their worth through metrics, this welcome book provides a refreshing perspective into how we might all find personal satisfaction and joy in playing the game of science.' Julie Smith, Radford College, Canberra and Malcolm Sambridge, Australian National University, Canberra

    'This book stands out from the sea of recipes for work-life balance and time management, in that it distills joy as a core trait for 'success'. Although it may seem at odds with the objective scientific method and the image of detached, humorless scientists, the authors make a fascinating case for personal touch, passion, and subjective imprint as core assets for creative, ground-breaking progress and improved personal lives. The book is informative and captivating, but most importantly, it is timely in an age where performance pressures surge to the detriment of progress, and academics find themselves with little time to do research.' Tarje Nissen-Meyer, University of Oxford

    'Too many scientists fall into the trap of overworking and burning out at great cost to their careers and personal lives. In The Joy of Science, Roel Snieder and Jen Schneider present a highly readable discussion of the challenges scientists face, and provide personal stories, thought-provoking questions, and practical recommendations relevant to both young and more senior scientists. They remind us that we are human and help us keep our eye on the ball, of a joyful and fulfilling life.' Richard Primack, Boston University and Editor-in-Chief, Biological Conservation

    'In The Joy of Science, emotional intelligence takes its rightful place alongside intellectual intelligence. A perfect read for the scientist, academic or engineer seeking a more fulfilling and successful life. [It] will be at the top of my client reading list.' Eileen Flanigan, MBA Process Engineer, author and life coach

    'This is not a book aimed at describing the qualities that lead to good research. Nor does The Joy of Science discuss ways to deal with problems by improving the system … Instead, in each chapter Snieder and Schneider give examples of scientists in pressure-induced, dysfunctional situations and suggest behavioral changes that could help alleviate the problem … One of the book's most important points, which wasn't emphasized enough in my view, is that students, postdocs, and faculty feeling under the gun often think that they are alone and that others who usually put up a good front don't feel such pressures. The Joy of Science can convince scientists under stress that they are not alone, and thus it can immediately begin to achieve its goal.' Gordon Kane, Physics Today

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    Customer reviews

    13th Jul 2016 by Lindahazen

    Excellent book. I loved it. Normally, we scientist try to avoid the terms like compassion, kindness etc. Professor Roel Snieder and Jen Schneider did wonderful work for science. I appreciate the effort. It is good contribution. Altogether a new look.

    Review was not posted due to profanity


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    Product details

    • Date Published: July 2016
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9781316509005
    • length: 180 pages
    • dimensions: 228 x 152 x 9 mm
    • weight: 0.31kg
    • contains: 34 b/w illus.
    • availability: In stock
  • Table of Contents

    1. Harmony
    2. Courage
    3. Vision
    4. Curiosity
    5. Listening
    6. Compassion
    7. Integrity

  • Authors

    Roel Snieder, Colorado School of Mines
    Roel Snieder holds the Keck Foundation Endowed Chair of Basic Exploration Science at the Colorado School of Mines. He received a Masters degree in geophysical fluid dynamics from Princeton University, New Jersey in 1984, and in 1987 a PhD in seismology from Universiteit Utrecht, The Netherlands. He has a strong interest in teaching professional development, and has developed classes on The Art of Science, Research Ethics, and Teamwork and Leadership. He is co-author of the textbooks A Guided Tour of Mathematical Methods for the Physical Sciences, 3rd edition (Cambridge, 2015) and The Art of Being a Scientist: A Guide for Graduate Students and their Mentors (Cambridge, 2009). Professor Snieder is a Fellow of the American Geophysical Union and Honorary Member of the Society of Exploration Geophysicists.

    Jen Schneider, Boise State University, Idaho
    Jen Schneider is an Associate Professor of Public Policy and Administration at Boise State University, Idaho, where she teaches and advises in the graduate program, and holds affiliate appointments with the College of Innovation and Design and the Public Policy Research Center. She serves as Associate Director of the Boise State University Experimental program to Stimulate Competitive Research (EPSCoR) program. She has published widely in the fields of environmental and science communication, energy studies, and engineering studies, including co-authoring the books Engineering and Sustainable Community Development (2010) and Under Pressure: Coal Industry Rhetoric and Neoliberalism (2016).

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