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Flexibility after PhD Completion



Hello all,

I'm a PhD student about halfway through here. I've been using my program to apply geospatial sciences and remote sensing methods to specific emerging issues in polar regions. I'm angling to develop an expertise in research methods that will be in wide demand by the time I finish... I don't have any intention of entering academia. In the process of my research I've been getting exposed to other areas of research in other parts of the world. I was wondering how hard it is to maneuver to other areas of research when my dissertation research is so focused on a specific topic and region? The methodologies would transition well, but I've been living in a very closed-off professional bubble in terms of my research. It's almost like a sensory deprivation tank, I could talk myself blue about the fine details of my research but lack an understanding of what's beyond the ivory tower... which is necessary if my goal is to not continue in academia. I know PhD's can be simultaneously enabling and limiting, depending on how strategic you are in the process of obtaining one. I'm curious if there are any PhDs out here who experienced the transition, and could let me know just how binding your dissertation topic is to your future career options. 

Thanks for all your advice and help, have a great week.

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