Not Your Fathers Archaeology- Time between PhD and Archaeology Academic Jobs.

Posted on November 25, 2011


A few days ago I wrote about the average time it took academics in the UK between receiving their PhD and getting an permanent academic job, 4.32 yrs,  but that was an over all average and not broken down by any other factors. I have since looked at these numbers by the decade in which a person received their job. Again, using the same data set of 159 (36%) out 442 archaeologists who currently hold permanent positions in the UK-

Decade Number Percent Average time
1970 11 7% -0.45455
1980 15 9% 1.333333
1990 56 35% 5.267857
2000 66 42% 5.030303
2010 10 6% 4.5

The most striking thing is that in the 1970’s on average most of the people who got permanent positions did so roughly right away. Of course this survey only takes into account archaeologists still working so there might be some survey bias in the results. That number jumps up significantly in the 1990s-present. It looks like now, on average, about 5 years are spent between a degree and permanent employment. It is a lot tougher road now then it was 30 years ago to get into academia archaeology. Of course people have been saying this for years but now here are some hard numbers to back up those “facts”.