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Collegiality Wins University of Rochester Spot on List of Best Workplaces for Scientists

Friday, November 09, 2007

Investment in shiny new research labs: $163 million;

Recruitment of stellar scientists: $272 million;

Working with people you respect: priceless.

The University of Rochester Medical Center’s 10-year investment in science paid a dividend this week when the magazine The Scientist announced its annual list of the Top 40 Best Places to Work for life scientists. As the only university in New York to place on this year’s ranking, the University of Rochester was buoyed by tenured faculty who gave their employer high marks for positive peer relationships and sound management and policies.

In addition to the Medical Center, the University of Rochester has life scientists working throughout the University, in areas such as the Department of Biology and the Department of Brain and Cognitive Sciences. 

The magazine’s ranking derives from a web-based survey of tenured or tenure-track life scientists working in educational, government-sponsored, or other non-commercial research institutions. Respondents were asked to assess their work environment according to 39 criteria in 8 different categories—job satisfaction, peers, infrastructure and environment, research resources, pay, management and policies, teaching and mentoring, and tenure—weighted by the respondents’ sense of each categories’ importance. More than 2,000 scientists responded.

Massachusetts GeneralHospital placed at the top of this year’s list, which also included the University of Texas’ M.D. Anderson Cancer Center, Duke University, Dana Farber Cancer Institute, and 36 others. The Trudeau Institute, a small private research center in Saranac Lake, and the Wadsworth Center, a government-funded research institute in Albany, were the only other New York State employers to rank. For the first time since 2004, scientists overall reported valuing peer relationships more than tenure. 

“The University of Rochester Medical Center was founded on the concept of collaboration, both between researchers and clinicians, and among scientists throughout this University and other institutions,” said David Guzick, M.D., Ph.D., dean of the School of Medicine and Dentistry.  “It’s gratifying to see that this spirit of collegiality is remains a critical selling point for scientists.”

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