Short version: Will putting a second PhD (by prior published work) on my CV cause more confusion than it is worth?
For the past decade I have built a strong academic career in a discipline that, objectively, is not what is listed on my PhD (think something along the lines of PhD in Classics but having an international research reputation in Contemporary Security Studies). I'm gainfully employed in a department associated with my chosen discipline, hold grants, supervise PhDs, etc etc. However unless you go deep into the gory details of my research focus, where everything becomes clear and logical, my PhD honestly doesn't make sense. Technically, I don't have the minimum qualification needed to be admitted to the master's programmes that I teach on.
I have the option of getting a "PhD by prior publication" in my real discipline from a top research university that I am not currently working at, but have a formal relationship with. It would cost nothing, and they have agreed I have prima face case for it and we are just finalising the details. I like the idea of resolving this confusion in my past, and (because the only step up for me is full Prof) I think that having it on hand will calm any promotion fears in the future.
Assuming the admin goes through, my CV would essentially be:
- PhD1 201x
- Progressive research career, grants, etc 201x–present
- PhD2 2022
I'm going to take the qualification...I mean, free PhD, no extra work needed! Who could say no? But I have the option just to quietly tuck it away until I need it for something specific such as proving I'm a real X-ologist for promotion.
So my question is, will this cause more confusion than it is worth on my CV, in the context of say, grant applications?
My sub questions are: Will it make it seem unclear what I was doing with my time? Does it have a negative connotation? Does anyone have any experience with how something like this would be evaluated in such a context? How do you feel about academics omitting qualifications from their CV?