Research in Higher Education

, Volume 15, Issue 4, pp 315–327 | Cite as

“Cloning” in academe: Mentorship and academic careers

  • Robert T. Blackburn
  • David W. Chapman
  • Susan M. Cameron


Mentor professors were surveyed with respect to their most successful “protégés” regarding scholarly production, the mentorship role, and their careers. Career stage, network stratification, and weak-tie theories provided the conceptual frameworks. The 62 mentors were highly productive professors who were predominantly both graduates and employees of research universities. Mentors overwhelmingly nominated as their most successful protégés those whose careers were essentially identical to their own—i.e., their “clones.” Women mentors named as most successfully protégés more than twice as many females and males than men did. More productive mentors linked with a greater number of protégés but were less knowledgable about their personal lives, as Granovetter's theory would predict. The results also demonstrate the openness of the network within stratified levels.


Conceptual Framework Education Research Personal Life Academic Career Career Stage 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Agathon Press, Inc 1981

Authors and Affiliations

  • Robert T. Blackburn
    • 1
  • David W. Chapman
    • 2
  • Susan M. Cameron
    • 3
  1. 1.University of MichiganUSA
  2. 2.State University of New York at AlbanyUSA
  3. 3.Syracuse UniversityUSA

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