A summer in the life of an academic
Ever wonder what academics do during the summer break? Well, wonder no more! Associate Professor of economics Christian Seel shares with us his summer plans and, as you'll quickly find out, they consist of a lot more than three months of sipping cocktails on the beach.
"So, what does your summer look like?"
"A major chunk of my summer will be an extensive research trip. During this trip, I will first present as an invited speaker at a specialised conference on contests in Bern and then at two bigger conferences in Ischia and Strasbourg."
“That’s quite a schedule! What is the main purpose of joining these conferences?”
“The purpose depends mainly on the size of the conference. For smaller and more specialised conferences like the one in Bern, the main goal is an exchange among leading scholars in a field, in my case contests. In those conferences, I get the most valuable feedback for my research papers. The larger conferences are more valuable to disseminate my work to a larger audience. Here, I also learn about recent developments in adjacent research fields, but I also exchange ideas about developments in teaching with colleagues from other universities. The schedules in the larger conferences are less dense leaving more time for networking.”
“Speaking of networking, do you plan to meet up with any colleagues during these conferences?”
“In Ischia, the three co-authors (Thomas Demuynck, Jean-Jacques Herings and Riccardo Saulle) of a paper we recently published in Econometrica will also be participating in the conference. I am excited to meet up with them there and to discuss further research opportunities in person and in a laid-back atmosphere. Between conferences, I will take the opportunity to visit my PhD student Riccardo Saulle in Rome.”
“Will you spend any of your time over the summer at SBE?”
“I usually spend August in Maastricht. The month consists of trying to improve my courses, MSc thesis defenses, helping colleagues with their applications for grants and some research time.”
“How about during your free time? Any plans?”
“During my free time, I will try to improve my chess. Next year, I have the unique opportunity and honor to play on the first board of the first German Chess League. The most exciting potential opponents include former World Champions Viswanathan Anand and Anatoly Karpov."
Christian Seel is an Associate Professor at Maastricht University's School of Business and Economics (SBE). He is a member of SBE's research theme Conflict and Cooperation and his fields of research include microeconomics, game theory, and bounded rationality. Christian received his PhD from the University of Bonn in 2011.