University Post
University of Copenhagen
Independent of management


Criticism of my research center is unfair

Cerebral membrane — The Center for Translational Neuromedicine has been supportive of early career researchers, says scientist. She does not recognize the criticism of the center in a dispute over co-authorship.

The research and working environment of the Center for Translational Neuromedicine (CTN) at the University of Copenhagen has been discussed in several newspaper articles published recently. In response to these, I would like to emphasize that I do not recognize the described situation as being faithful to the CTN reality.

There is no doubt that academic research is a highly competitive and demanding job. The declining funding essential for state-of-the-art research and retaining short-term academic positions creates an even more challenging situation for academic researchers. Unfortunately, success in research is predominantly measured by the number and impact of scientific publications. This ‘publish or perish’ culture is indeed an international problem.

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Despite this pressing situation, CTN and its leadership provide great resources, and support for us, early career researchers. In this environment we are allowed and encouraged to excel in our scientific pursuits while maintaining the work life balance that each of us chooses.

This fact is highlighted by the high number of young CTN staff who have from one to several children, and consequently have been on parental leave – both men and women – or have been on sick leave and were supported throughout their time of absence by a strong team that stands together to ensure everyone’s success. Furthermore, the majority of CTN staff works here on average 4 years before continuing their careers either in other world-leading research laboratories, as independent scientists, or transitioning to influential positions in industry.

Regardless of our next career step, all directions have the support of the leadership and benefit of the great network and connections that are formed by the excelled scientific work done at CTN.