Some 61% of freshly minted US physics and astronomy PhDs from the classes of 2009 and 2010 took postdocs, and 30% of them found potentially permanent jobs. That’s up—and down, respectively—from 56% and 33% from the classes of 2007 and 2008, changes due at least in part to the economic slump. Not surprisingly, a higher proportion of people in applied fields found potentially permanent work (red bars) than did those in fundamental research, who took postdocs in greater numbers (blue bars). These and related data are discussed in Physics Doctorates One Year Later, a recent report by the Statistical Research Center of the American Institute of Physics; see http://aip.org/statistics/trends/emptrends.html.

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