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The Philippine Star's Dominic Foo and Raymond Tan emphasize the importance of productive PhD students for running a successful academic research program. "Our personal advice is to hire one good PhD student, rather than having several of average quality. The principle of 'quality over quantity' allows one to retain focus," Foo and Tan write.

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As we enter conference season, Nature News asks why graduate students and postdocs are sometimes forced to choose between paying the rent and paying to attend important meetings.

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