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Postdoctoral appointments are among the most important steps in the career of a research scientist, and an orderly and fair postdoctoral appointment procedure is in the best interest of the community. To this end, a number of fields have established (with different degrees of formality) earliest recommended deadlines for decisions on postdoctoral offers.
In general, the Executive Committee of the Division of Gravitational Physics (DGRAV) recommends that decisions on postdoctoral offers should not be required earlier than February 1st of a given year. It is, however, recognized that the research interests of the DGRAV span a considerable range and intersect with several other communities, notably astronomy and particle physics. When the interests of a postdoctoral applicant significantly overlap with another community, the DGRAV Executive Committee further recommends that its members adopt the deadline for decisions on postdoctoral offers that are common practice in that community: earlier deadlines are acceptable in fields having earlier standard decision dates, and later deadlines are recommended in fields having later dates.
(Adopted by DGRAV, May 2011; approved by APS, Nov 2011)