What is the optimal week schedule for a basic science researcher?

There are a number of competing priorities in being a highly productive basic science researcher. With the emerging science of timing (see Daniel Pink’s book) it seems like there might be a useful template for the ideal week that could then be customized.

There’s lots to dissect here. Here are the phases I propose for our discussion

  • what are the “things to do”
  • then let’s categorize and prioritize these (i.e. which do we want to make as short as possible, which should we do as much as possible, what brings the most value). Which needs deep work time, which can be done in shallow work time?

To kick it off - here are some “things that need to be done” that I can think of are:

  • doing bench work
  • reading the literature
  • planning your paper(s)
  • writing
  • doing analysis
  • discussion / review within your team
  • submitting and revising (i.e. getting it to publication)
  • presenting your work at conferences (incl. deciding on, submitting, preparing, travel, presenting)
  • teaching
  • administrative duties
  • clinical duties (for medical basic science researchers)
  • and often forgotten, improving how you do your work

What else?