Who’s your (academic) (great-grand) Daddy?!

Science is a giant family. Each Professor gives “birth” to a litter of PhD students over time, many of whom go on to have their own students, who have their own students, and so on and so forth ad infinitum.

While all of us know our academic parent (right?), at least some of our sciblings (depending on the age of the lab), and usually our academic grandparent, what about our great-grandparent? Or great-great-grandparent. Can my aacadmic lineage be traced back to Darwin? Or Linneaus? Indeed, something like 40% of mathematicians can indeed trace themselves back to Leibniz.

Not it’s time for Marine Ecologists to do the same.

Mary O’Connor has graciously setup a Marine Ecology Family Tree over at the wonderful academictree.org. The site endeavours to see how all academic geneologies end up connecting. Is your discipline not there? Contact the admins. But if you’re a marine ecologist, go there now, login, and fill in your info! Let’s see how many degrees we’re separated by!

(also, as more info is filled in, I’ll update my tree on the right)

2 thoughts on “Who’s your (academic) (great-grand) Daddy?!

  1. Yes, it’s cool. But I’m a bit puzzled about the details. I can only enter one home institution for myself (and what’s the difference between institution and department, do you know?) which makes it a bit problematic to do different matches, e.g. between me and my graduate supervisor (occurred at another department then my current one) and me and my postdoc supervisors (three different ones, each at different departments). How did you do it?



  2. I believe you fill in your current institution. There is also a slot for department, although it’s not as important. Indeed, if you trace back to old old academics, the university is all that matters. When you list a link between you and a supervisor, you specify at what university that link took place. It’s a nice way to provide a trail of where one has been, as it were.

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