In a study released in August 2010, Zhou Guangli (周光礼), a professor at Huazhong University of Science and Technology, revealed that 46 percent of doctoral advisors in China have more than 7 PhD students in their charge, and some have as many as 47. However, the vast majority of these doctoral advisors believe than fewer than 6 of their students are suitable for PhD work, according to Zhou’s study. Numbers in 2010 showed that PhD student enrollment in China has increased by 4.56 times in the past decade. Zhou Guangli revealed in his study that PhD students have already become a source of cheap labor for their doctoral advisors. Zhang Xianda (张贤达) illustrates this story in the cartoon blog section at The doctoral advisor, seated with a big moneybag at his feet, traps his students inside a huge cap that reads, “PhD students.” The thought bubble over the advisor’s head says: “Ha ha! What great cheap labor!”

David Bandurski

CMP Director

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