A Guide for Doctoral Students and Junior Faculty Members in the Behavioral and Social Sciences

This book provides guidance and tools to help PhD students and junior faculty members successfully navigate and mature through the various stages of an academic career. Senior faculty members can use this book as a source of ideas to advise their PhD students and junior colleagues. This book presents knowledge that is seldom imparted in PhD programs, and organizes the same as advice and tools related to achieving success at research, teaching and service, all while maintaining work-life balance. The advice and tools provided are based on years of experience of the author and guest contributors, who have successfully navigated many of the same challenges and mentored many PhD students and junior faculty members. This book is suitable both for those who seek careers in research universities or universities that promote greater balance across research, teaching and service.

Life in academia is like life in no other profession. The intellectual freedom in conducting research coupled with the ability to positively impact the lives of students through teaching makes it exciting and noble. The road to success in making a difference through knowledge creation (research), knowledge dissemination (teaching) and activities related to both (service) is riddled with many challenges. While PhD programs are designed to teach students the nitty gritty details of conducting research, few focus on the broad issues of how to build a successful research program, how to build an effective teaching portfolio and how to do deal with the many other challenges encountered. Navigating the broader challenges of academia is often accomplished by trial-and-error or ad-hoc mentoring one may receive. This book, which provides advice and tools, seeks to help researchers achieve success by navigating through these very challenges. The book comprises 20 chapters that are organized into five major sections:

  • Research
  • Managing the PhD Program
  • Life after the PhD
  • Teaching and service
  • Broader advice

In addition to the author, both junior and senior scholars have provided contributions to share their own experiences and observations of others who have been successful.

The most important component of the book is the various tools (e.g., how-to advice, checklists) that are provided to help junior researchers head up the road to success and to arm senior researchers to guide junior researchers along the way. The various tools target the following six areas:

  • Building and sustaining a research program
  • Writing a paper
  • Responding to reviews
  • Planning and monitoring through various stages of the PhD program
  • Becoming an effective teacher
  • Achieving work-life balance

(2nd edition: October 2021—VT Publishing; 1st edition: August 2011—Dog Ear Publishing)


  • Universityof Wisconsin—Whitewater, WI (Oct 2022)
  • LITEM/SmartBIS seminar series—France [remote] (Jun 2022)
  • Universityof Wisconsin—Whitewater, WI (Dec 2021)
  • IowaState University, Ames, IA [remote] (Apr 2021)
  • Virginia Tech, Blacksburg,VA [remote] (3 sessions; Mar-May 2021)
  • University of Wisconsin—Whitewater (Nov 2020)
  • University of Wisconsin—Whitewater (Dec 2019)
  • NOVA Information Management School, Portugal (Jun 2019)
  • University of Wisconsin—Whitewater (Nov 2018)
  • NOVA Information Management School, Portugal (Jul 2018)
  • University of Wisconsin—Whitewater (Nov 2017)
  • University of Wisconsin—Whitewater (Dec 2016)
  • Indian Institute of Management Kozhikode for faculty members (Sep 2016)
  • Indian Institute of Management Kozhikode for PhD students (Sep 2016)
  • University of Wisconsin—Whitewater (Sep 2015).
  • Pacific and Asia Conference on Information Systems Doctoral Consortium (Jul 2015).
  • NEOMA Business School, Reims campus (Mar 2015).
  • NEOMA Business School, Rouen campus (Mar 2015).
  • University of Queensland, Australia (Dec 2014).
  • Tsinghua University, China (May 2014).
  • Chinese University of Geosciences, China (May 2014).
  • Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Hong Kong (Mar 2014).
  • Ming Chuan University, Taiwan (Mar 2014).
  • Monash University, Malaysia (Jun 2013).
  • Georgia State University, Atlanta (Jan 2012).
  • Washington State University, Pullman (Nov 2011).
  • Association for Information Systems Webinar (Nov 2011).
  • University of Wollongong, Australia (Jul 2011).
  • Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Hong Kong (Mar 2011).