Monday, August 31, 2015

Request for assistance or pretext for applying

I recently got an email from a colleague (who is the head of the search committee) from my previous institute. The email is as follows:

The awesome_institute has created a new position viz. Director of XYZ.  I am attaching the advertisement.  We will start reviewing the applications by xx 20xx, and hope to fill the position by xx, 20xx.   Could you forward this to anyone in your institutes who might be interested in applying?

I know that in academia if some one (read: search committee member) asks you 

"Are you happy in your institute/department etc." 
 that is a pretext for 
"If you apply we will consider you and hopefully hire you" 

Do you think the above email has such a pretext? I am just curious because I don't think I would like to go in that institute back. Not that there is something wrong with the science and the people there ( both are awesome) but because I feel that I have more freedom in my research endeavors in my current position.

But I am curious; I used to be after this director position before I got my tenure-track :D


  1. No, I do not see any such pretext. It is very common to send out job ads to one's network. Based on the portion you have presented, it seems to be just one of those regular mass forwarded notices.

    1. Interesting. In theory, how would you know if there is such a pretext? Are there clues? secret signs? what??

      I am asking because I do remember such an interaction. I was very naive then. I am still naive but a bit older may be