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For sufficiently small subfields, the number of jobs is small enough to count manually. For example, the HEP rumor mill counts all high energy physics jobs in the US. The number of jobs per year is in the very low double digits.

Are there statistics on the number of postdoc/professor positions per year in specific subfields? I'd be particularly interested in the fraction of interested undergrads that get into grad school in that subfield, the fraction of grads that get postdocs, the fraction of postdocs that get tenure-track positions, and the fraction of those professors that get tenure.

I'm aware that these statistics exist by scientific field, and the AIP has counts of graduate students by physics subfield, but I'd be interested in postdoc/professorship stats too.

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    Motivation: I heard that low funding is a good thing for job hunting, conditional on getting into grad school. The idea is that funding cuts disproportionately hit grad student spots, so the grad student to job ratio actually improves. Conversely, 'rich' subfields have armies of grad students but not necessarily more faculty positions. I'm not totally convinced, so I'd be interested in seeing numbers. – knzhou Aug 5 '16 at 6:56
  • Regarding your motivation - it can't be true; see the humanities. As for counting jobs in a subfield, what counts? If they were to hire, Union College would probably look for something like "any subfield of theoretical physics", and teaching undergraduates (they have no grad students) is probably somewhat of a higher priority than research in their job. Would that count towards HEP jobs? Only if they end up hiring an HEP person? Or not at all because it's not a research university? – Alexander Woo Aug 5 '16 at 7:20
  • @AlexanderWoo What exactly about the humanities? – knzhou Aug 5 '16 at 7:25
  • I guess I would like to only count research (R1-R3) universities. But I'm not picky, I would appreciate any stats at all. – knzhou Aug 5 '16 at 7:26
  • in the US, the humanities get almost no research funding, and their job markets tend to be an order of magnitude worse (for applicants) than anything in the sciences. – Alexander Woo Aug 5 '16 at 7:46

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