Using survival analysis to study scientific career transitions
Survival analysis--which is also called event history analysis--is presented as an excellent analytic technique for the study of career timing. The technique was developed in biostatistics to model the hazard rate of death after experiencing an adverse health event such as a heart attack--hence the name survival analysis. This class of methods accounts for the censoring related to those who have not experienced an event. In the case of careers, these are people who are "on track" for a promotion, but who have not yet earned one. If we only used the people who were promoted to estimate time to promotion, we would not be able to account for the people who are eligible for promotion, but have not yet been promoted. Using the case of tenure in the US system, I will show an example of a proportional hazards approach and a discrete time approach.
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Gaughan is an Associate Professor in the School of Human Evolution and Social Change at Arizona State University. Her research focuses on the training, distribution, and migration of scientists and engineers in the global knowledge system, with a particular interest in the US science system and its relationship to other science systems. Within this US system, Gaughan studies how policies and practices affect scientific career development, with a particular focus on differences by race, ethnicity, gender, socioeconomic status and national origin. Gaughan is currently co-PI of the ASU ADVANCE award to improve equity among faculty and academic leadership. As lead of the social science research team, Gaughan studies how diverse faculty build academic careers in an explicitly interdisciplinary institutional environment.
Gaughan is a 1989 graduate of the New College of Florida, majoring in Political Science. She holds a Master of Public Administration degree from the Maxwell School, Syracuse University (1992), and served as a Presidential Management Fellow of the US Department of Health and Human Services from 1992-1994. She earned both a MA (1997) and Ph.D. (1999) in Sociology from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Gaughan has held academic appointments at Oglethorpe University (1999-2001), Georgia Institute of Technology (2002-2006), and the University of Georgia (2006-2013).