Friday, November 9, 2012

From RVB theory to parliament

When I was a grad student at Princeton, Phil Anderson had a number of students (Zhou Zou, Ted Hsu, Joe Wheatley, ...) who worked on RVB theory. They all eventually left physics for Wall Street. Phil used to joke that they were all making more money than him!

I just learned that Ted Hsu is now a member of parliament in Canada!
I saw this in an article in Physics Today that raises concerns about changes in funding direction for physics in Canada.
There is also an interview with him on the Physics Today site.


  1. Good for him!

    By the way, I should say I read your blog quite often and find it very informative and interesting. I often plan to comment, but am then side-tracked by the usual distractions of daily faculty life!

  2. Hi Ross:

    I read your blog quite often as well and I enjoy it very much. Please keep up the good work!

    As a Canadian working in the Canadian science community, I have to say that although some of the current trends are troubling, it is still a much better system than the States. NSERC, CFI, and the CRC programs have been tremendously successful at attracting and retaining talent. However, we are slowing moving towards an elitist approach where the larger universities get the lion's share of the money while the medium and smaller universities get very little. Let's hope that the work of Ted and others will be able to change things.

  3. You know, I would appreciate a level-headed (sobre minded?) post on the pros and cons of such a move (to finance, or industry in general, not parliament!). As someone who must necessarily consider such things, I would appreciate the wisdom of someone who has lived with their own decision and seen many people make different ones over the years and live with them.

    I don't think you need more people saying how much they appreciate this blog, but I do believe it's unique in condensed matter, and valuable. And it is so nice to see famous people (e.g. Anderson) and people from my own past (Le Tacon (who may one day be similarly famous)) commenting on it.

    1. Hi Tony,
      Thanks for post suggestion.
      I am thinking about it and will write something when my thoughts have settled.

  4. Hi Ross,
    I stumbled on your blog - yes I monitor what's said on the internet about me, normally looking for sneaky political attacks - glad to "catch up" with you a bit!