MathOverflow is a question and answer site for professional mathematicians. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

Hi, my question is:

Is it acceptable to do a PhD in mathematics in a topic such as Number Theory and or Analysis and change subjects in postdoc to something different than these topics such as Geometry/Topology or something else?

I've looked on some pages of researchers in mathematics and most of them just continued their topic of dissertation after their graduation.

Thanks in advance.

share|cite|improve this question

closed as not a real question by quid, Deane Yang, Willie Wong, Federico Poloni, Chris Godsil Jul 3 '12 at 11:07

It's difficult to tell what is being asked here. This question is ambiguous, vague, incomplete, overly broad, or rhetorical and cannot be reasonably answered in its current form. For help clarifying this question so that it can be reopened, visit the help center.If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

Not only is it desirable to broaden your research after completing your PhD studies. By some national funding agencies, such as the Swedish Research Council for example, this is actually a requirement to be elegible for their postdoctoral scholarships. You need to present a research plan that shows that you are are not "getting stuck" in old tracks. – Johan Öinert Jul 3 '12 at 9:30
Wasn't this already asked here?… – Jonny Evans Jul 3 '12 at 9:31
The question is too vague for me. There are no restrictions, and you are allowed at any time in your academic career to work on any subject you choose. You don't even have to work on math. You don't even have to do any work at all. You should just understand as well as you can the impact and risks of your actions and choices on your career as a mathematician, assuming that you want to pursue such a career. – Deane Yang Jul 3 '12 at 10:23
Vote to close as too vague/not a real question as elaborated on by Deane Yang. In addition some general aspects were already discussed in the question linked to by Jonny Evans, so it also almost a duplicate. – user9072 Jul 3 '12 at 10:27
Neeraj, justification of any path in intellectual pursuit is inner, and the typical requirements of some sponsor institution who get hysteric about something they do not understand about are not invalidating the inner turns. I do not understand "does not make sense". If somebody gets interested in something new, the interest itself generates large momentum. Instead I think that a restriction to what someone will live for does not make sense, and needs why ? – Zoran Skoda Jul 3 '12 at 11:14