In contract to available information for faculty positions, I would be interested to learn how to go for a spousal-hire arrangement at a postdoc level. In my view, there are three factors that might play a role (similarity of work, obviousness of the relationship, funding).

My specific question:

How would you approach as a rather obvious couple (based on overlap in the CV) an application to the same lab (due to the same sub-specialization)?

  1. Two independet applications or single application?
  2. Mentioning the partner or not?
  3. Or applications seperated over time? I.e. one application and then asking for a spousal-hire arrangement during the actual hiring process?
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    I would disagree that "overlap in the CV" == "a rather obvious couple". – Bryan Krause Jan 17 '20 at 0:37
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    I don't have an answer to the question, but I am pleased to hear that somewhere in the world (US, presumably?) there is still some hope to get some spousal arrangements at postdoc level. Personally, I have not seen it been done in the UK for temporary or permanent staff below the professorial rank. – Dmitry Savostyanov Jan 17 '20 at 0:44

I do not think that any of these are realistic strategies. Sorry.

If you are in a field where there are many jobs, you may be able so separately obtain positions which are in the same city.

Spousal hire arrangements are used to recruit highly prestigious candidates to permanent faculty positions. It would be unusual to have the resources to use that hiring strategy for a temporary postdoc position.

  • Would self acquired funding/fellowship for one or both change your assessment? Or would you consider the situation still as socially unacceptable? – Henle Jan 17 '20 at 2:53
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    @Henle If you both applied for a fellowship, such as a Marie Curie, and you both received it, that would not be considered a spousal hire. Fellowships usually have rules, and the rules will not consider who your spouse is. However, some fellowships do provide additional funds if you have family. But the family members do not get a job. That is also not a spousal hire. – Anonymous Physicist Jan 17 '20 at 3:28
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    @AnonymousPhysicist What about “I was given a grant of $X million, with the authority to hire staff, so I decided to hire my wife”? – nick012000 Jan 17 '20 at 6:21
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    @nick012000 That's a totally different situation, on which I have no comment. – Anonymous Physicist Jan 17 '20 at 7:21
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    @nick012000 related to your comment, but about hiring a past-romantic partner. I'm sure I've seen another Q&A about hiring a relative but couldn't quickly find it. – mkennedy Jan 17 '20 at 18:17

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