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Experiments to Theory transition- how advisable?

PostPosted: Wed Jan 09, 2008 11:30 am
by G. H.
Hi everyone,
Here is my situation. I studied Physics during my Masters Degree and went on to do a PhD in Structural Biology (X ray crystallography) in a leading European lab. Since my graduation in 2006 I have been working as a postdoc in another good lab in Europe. I have been doing fairly well so far, although my publications, both during my postdoc tenure and my PhD, are not good enough to enable me to start my own lab anywhere. I have about 18 months left on my postdoc contract now.
For the past two years or so, I have developed a great interest in theory and computation, mainly in the areas of Systems Biology and Computational Molecular biology. I have been spending some time reading papers on these areas and am able to understand them. I\'m now seriously contemplating making a switch from experiments to theory, but my worry is that I haven\'t known anyone who has made such a transition. Although I have reasonable math skills, I haven\'t done any serious theory so far, and so I wonder whether I would fit in a theoretical setup. I also have my doubts whether any theoretical group would even want a person like me at the postdoc level, as they would see me as a novice in need of some training they may not be willing to provide. Is such a drastic change in areas advisable, or should I stick to doing what I am most experienced at?
Thanks in anticipation.