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CD Policy Recommendations - Case studies

Some examples of researcher career development in the world


While working on the recommendations on how to foster researcher career development we identified some institutions that were already working on researcher career development. We thought their experience might be useful for those institutions starting their work on the matter. You can check the experiences of The University of Copenhagen, VITAE UK, The Barcelona Supercomputing Centre, The Polish Foundation for Science and Technology and The Helmholtz Foundation on the right.

Also, we have performed some desk research so we can have an overview of the progress in researcher career development in some other institutions. You can check the full review here

The non-profit programme Vitae, is the global leader in supporting the professional development of researchers, understanding these as anyone training or trained in research, whether they continue in academia or use their professional skills in a career outside the academia.

Vitae organizes events, co-develops training materials and offers a wide range of online material for researcher development covering all career stages (R1 to R4). It also supports its members in producing their HRS4R logo action plan, and is the EURAXESS Career Development Centre for the UK through it is collaboration with Bridgehead Organization British Council.

Among the online material of Vitae, we find their Researcher Development Framework (RDF) that describes the knowledge, behaviour and attributes of successful researchers. This a resource widely used by research performing organizations to audit and organize their professional development support to the research staff, as well as an assessment tool for individual needs and progress.

Within in the UK, Vitae measures the impact of its career development activities using the principles of the Concordat to Support the Career Development of Researchers on behalf the Concordat Strategy Group. In the UK, the Concordat provides an unambiguous statement of the expectations and responsibilities of researchers and their managers, employers and funders, which gives a framework to detail progress on measures related to recruitment and selection, recognition and value, or career development, among other. Most of this evidence is gathered from regular surveys to researchers in the UK:

  • Postgraduate Research Experience Survey (PRES) to postgraduate research students run by the Higher Education Academy
  • Careers in Research Online Survey (CROS) run by Vitae to early career research staff
  • Principal Investigators and Research Leaders Survey (PIRLS) also run by Vitae to research leaders and principal investigators


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