PostDocs around the globe are stirred into a new type of consciousness about their plight, reacting to their slavery conditions in university and academic institutions they are up and ready to fight for recognition and better treatment. The first evidence for this growing level of new found consciouness started at the University of Connecticut Health Center (UCHC) , Farmington, CT USA through their unionization few years ago. It took a while for the impact of their unionization to make an impact and to be visible elsewhere, especially when it happens at the UC-California campus...,... it was not so hard to feel the impact. Then came the news from one of the Canadian university where postdocs are increasingly agitated by the poor status of the postdocs and they are one step close to unionization. But, this time, the news is from Italy. The Italian Postdocs are in the street protesting and fighting to change the "death" of postdocs role in the universities?.
Luca Leuzzi Young Italian Scientists Take to the Streets
November 28, 2008
There are no guarantees even for scientists who were in the process of being brought into permanent positions.
In most countries, Luca Leuzzi would be well on his way to tenure. After obtaining a Ph.D. in theoretical physics cum laude from the University of Amsterdam in the Netherlands, Leuzzi came back to his native Italy in 2002 for a 2-year postdoc at Statistical Mechanics and Complexity, a National Research Council center at the University of Rome, "La Sapienza." Leuzzi, who is 36 years old, obtained a 5-year position there (akin to a tenure-track position elsewhere) in January 2005. He was confident that, in time, he would obtain tenure.
But Leuzzi's career aspirations, along with those of many other researchers on short-term contracts in Italy, have collided with a series of new laws that will severely reduce national resources for universities and research centers, part of a larger plan to boost the country's economy. Today, Leuzzi's prospects are "quite unclear," as he puts it. "The only thing I know is that either I'm in, or I have to leave.