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Science careers and mental health

Science’s hyper-competitive environment and its ‘publish or perish’ culture can breed anxiety and depression. Nature's latest global graduate survey, published in October 2017, showed 12% of all respondents had sought help for anxiety or depression caused by their PhD studies.  And an international study published in Nature Biotechnology in March 2018 provided compelling evidence of a mental health crisis in graduate education with nearly 40% of respondents showing signs of moderate to severe depression. Our online resource aims to highlight this important issue and provides support and advice, not only to scientists struggling with poor mental health but also their colleagues, mentors, and supervisors.

Image: Sébastien Thibault

The Naturejobs blog platform has more than 1000 posts from career scientists on workplace-related topics, including the pressures of  a PhD, mental health, wellbeing and work-life balance. If you have a story to share and would like us to consider it for publication, please contact jack[dot]leeming@nature[dot]com

Here is a selection of some relevant posts.

Being proactive about mental health during your PhD: a very short guide

Karra Harrington decided to use her training as a psychologist to develop ways to be proactive about managing mental health during the course of a PhD.

Failing to fail gracefully

Failure is hard, but keep trying, says immunologist John Tregoning in this Naturejobs blog, a follow-up to his earlier post, Using pop songs to main good mental health in academia.

The value of my PhD: looking back one year after graduating

Her PhD on Parkinson’s disease didn’t go exactly as planned, but in the end the difficulties made Liesbeth Aerts a happier scientist.

Leaving the comfort zone

The novel and the unexpected comes with a dose of anxiety. This nervousness will only help you in your career, says Thaís Moraes.