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Forward Backward Thinking: Pipelines and Deep Time

23 Nov 2011, 02:05 UTC
Forward Backward Thinking: Pipelines and Deep Time
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A bit of a long-winded digression today, but as a physical scientist at heart I can’t help myself. I’m riled. (Riled to the point of considering expanding the rant to follow into an article submission to the journal Ground Water or perhaps Arid Environments…)
Allow me to explain.
Industry vs. Academia
Me - seeking an elusive industry+academic science subculture balance.
First, for those who haven’t been long-time readers, I should mention that I’m something of an enigma as a scientist: I’m an academia-industry hybrid. In my experience, this isn’t normal; We tend to be either-or.
Often, in one corner, there are career field scientists (with often nothing more than a bachelor’s degree) who have spent their professional lives out “in the field,” dealing with practical problems, earning the kind of experience and “sixth-sense” about their specialty that can only be earned with the expenditure of time, blood, sweat, and tears. They tend to hold in disdain the highly-credentialed-and-published academic scientist, with little comparable field experience and much effort spent on apparently esoteric pursuits, who swoops down from a perch in the ivory tower to tell the field scientists “how it really works” because of research they’ve performed, etc., etc. (They’re ...

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