Most hospital doctors, of all grades, will be familiar with the division of hospital medicine between the academic side, of teaching and research, and the non academic side, also known as "working for a living". Throughout my career I was often struck by the schism between the two, and the disdain expressed by both sides for the other. I was always a worker, slogging away on a daily basis, with no interest personally in research, or any time to do it. I always felt I should have a degree of respect and admiration for those working in the teaching hospitals, who I expected would be more talented, skilled and brighter than me. So whenever I met some of these people I was always a little disappointed to find that they didn't quite live up to my expectations.
Today, in two totally different areas I have found the problem with academia, both in medicine, and more generally, expressed succinctly and simply.
Firstly I read a resignation letter from a PhD student expressing his disappointment with his experience.
"I’ve lost faith in today’s academia as being something that brings a
positive benefit to the world/societies we live in. Rather, I’m starting
to think of it as a big money vacuum that takes in grants and spits out
nebulous results, fueled by people whose main concerns are not to
advance knowledge and to effect positive change, though they may talk of
such things, but to build their CVs and to propel/maintain their
Within just 20 minutes I read this, almost identical lament from "The Medical Registrar" on facebook:
Only one problem?
14 hours ago