My papers

I remember Dennis Chitty once telling me: "In our days, we only published when we had something to say. Today, if you don't have anything to say, you do that in at least two or three publications." That was in 1996, when Chitty was 84 years old and I was 31. I have lived by his standards ever since.


[pdf] Baumann, M. (2020), In praise of oral exams. Unpublished.

[pdf] Baumann, M. (2018), Confessions of a failed scientist. Unpublished.

[link] Baumann, M. (2017), How complacency is failing Canadian university students. University Affairs, 17 Oct 2017 (; Accessed: 6 Jun 2020). [University Affairs gave this piece a misleading title, which I changed back to the one I preferred.]

[pdf] Baumann, M. (2017), University presidency -- A draft manifesto., 22 Jun - 10 Aug 2017.

[link] Baumann, M. (2007), Why education has lost its mind (and soul). Vancouver Sun, 13 Sep 2007 (; Accessed: 6 Jun 2020). [The Vancouver Sun gave this piece a different title, which I changed back to the one I preferred.]

[pdf] Baumann, M. (2003), Open letter to the President of the University of British Columbia. [The last sentence in this letter was written in anger and was a mistake. It allowed U.B.C. senior administration to ignore the valid points I made.]

[pdf] Baumann, M. (2000), Science as churning device: Produce anything, at all costs. A commentary on the 2000 Nobel Prizes. Vancouver Sun, 18 Oct 2000: A19.

[pdf] Baumann, M. (1996), Academic management. Nature 381(6578): 108.


[link] Baumann, M. (2021), Elements of Truth. Philosophy Now (142, Feb/Mar).

[pdf] Baumann, M. (2020), CoViD-19: On Data, Models, and Public Policy. Unpublished.
[I wrote the manuscript in the autumn of 2020. It is about some of the epistemological problems we are facing in the study of and response to the CoViD epidemic, issues that I have not seen raised anywhere else. Consequently, I submitted it to Science, their Policy Forum section. It was rejected because America's flagship journal did not find my manuscript worthy of "a high priority rating during the initial screening process". I then submitted it to Nature with the same result. In a last attempt at publication, I thought of Ecology and Society, only to learn that you now have to pay USD 1,000 to get a paper published. Of coure, it could be a useless paper. Still, my experiences made me think of Richard Feynman who once stated that "in science there is no interest in the background of the author of an idea". I think that Feynman never understood how the business of science really works.]

[pdf] Baumann, M. (2005), Pandemics, Fear, and Loathing In Canada The Graduate Magazine: 15-16. Fifteen years later, I look back and feel that while I anticipated the problems correctly, I did not take them seriously enough.

[link] Baumann, M. (2000), On Nature, Models, and Simplicity. Ecology and Society 4(2): r4. (; Accessed: 6 Jun 2020).

[pdf] Baumann, M. /Hadden, S. (2000), How much use is the Human Genome Project? Nature 404(6778): 541-542.


[link] Baumann, M. (1998), Ecosystem effects on harvested populations: Lower trophic level dynamics in the Northeast Pacific and its implications on sockeye salmon (Oncorhynchus nerka) survival. 272 pages. Ph.D. thesis, University of British Columbia, Canada (; Accessed: 6 Jun 2020).
[I never considered my Ph.D. thesis as being terribly relevant; good yes, great no. In early June 2020, 22 years after I completed my thesis, Charley Krebs suggested that it should have been published in full. The relevance lies in Chapter 5: Conclusions, which is a scathing assessment of systems modelling.]

[pdf] Baumann, M. (1998), The fallacy of the missing middle: physics -> ... -> fisheries. Fisheries Oceanography 7(1): 63-65.

[pdf] Baumann, M. (1995), A comment on transfer efficiencies. Fisheries Oceanography 4(3): 264-266.

End of text.