Science, technology and innovation policy

Workshop on The research workforce of the future: promoting diverse career options for doctoral and postdoctoral researchers



 22-23 Novembre 2022  Online workshop



This workshop is an opportunity to discuss the initial findings of the OECD-GSF project on promoting diverse career options for doctoral and postdoctoral researchers, share the main lessons learned, and best practices that can be implemented with a wider audience of stakeholders. The results of the discussion will inform the final report of the project and future OECD work on research careers.


WORKSHOP documents




11:30-12:00 - Item 1. Introduction

Verity Elston, Co-Director of the Graduate Campus, University of Lausanne, Chair of the Expert Group will chair the workshop. Welcome by Carthage Smith, Lead Coordinator, OECD Global Science Forum (GSF) and Cláudia Sarrico, project consultant - Presentation (PDF) 

12:00-13:00 - Item 2. Engaging and interacting with employers outside academia

This session will examine the opportunities and the challenges for institutions and funders in actively engaging with employers beyond academia. What can we learn from employers about how to best prepare doctoral and postdoctoral researchers for career options beyond academia; how can we encourage employers to consider the recruitment of PhDs; and how does this engagement influence the spirit and purpose of doctoral training and the context of academic research?

Moderator: Neda Bebiroglu, Fonds de la Recherche Scientifique, Belgium Presentation of project findings (10’)

Panel discussion (30’)

  • Joshua Barker, Dean, School of Graduate Studies at University of Toronto, Canada
  • István Szabo, Vice-President of the Hungarian National Research, Development and Innovation Office, Hungary
  • Claudine Pierron, Transverse project manager, Association Pour l'Emploi des Cadres, France - Presentation (PDF)
  • Sampan Silapanad, Vice President, Chief Thailand Business Strategist, Hard Disk Drive Operations, Western Digital, Thailand Q&A (20’).

13:40-14:40 - Item 3. Experience and skills for diverse careers within and beyond academia

This session will review the ways in which institutions and funders can provide doctoral and postdoctoral researchers with concrete opportunities, such as through collaborative projects and skills training programmes, to enable their professional development for a wide range of career options both within and beyond academic research.

Moderator: Heidi Prozesky, Stellenbosch University, South Africa Presentation of project findings (10’)

Panel discussion (30’)

  • Jang, Deok-Ho, Professor, Higher education policy and administration, Department of Education, Sangmyung University, Seoul, Korea - Presentation (PDF)
  • Carmen Simon, Head of the Department Posgrado y Espacializacion (DPE), Spain
  • Nicolas Gibney, Association of Doctoral Organizations in Norway Q&A (20’)

14:50-15:50 - Item 4. Visibility, valorisation and guidance on career options

This session will explore how funders and institutions can use the increasing volume of quantitative and qualitative data on researcher careers, as well as the growing field of specialisation on career development and guidance for researchers, to render more visible and encourage greater valorisation of the reality and diversity of career options within and beyond academic research.

Moderator: Johannes Waage Løvhaug, Research Council of Norway Presentation of project findings (10’)

Panel discussion (30’)

  • Nel Grillaert, Coordinator PhD Career Hub, University of Ghent, Belgium - Presentation (PDF)
  • Seraina Munton, Senior Research Advisor and Manager for ETH Zurich and University of Zurich, Switzerland
  • Annemijn Algra, Young Science in Transition, Netherlands Q&A (20’) - Presentation (PDF)


 11:30-12:30 - Item 5. Promoting inter-sectoral mobility with the business enterprise sector

The focus of this session will be on the ways in which funders and institutions can support researchers to transition from academic research to business enterprise, and from business enterprise to academic research, as well as the opportunities, barriers and risks involved in these transitions.

Moderator: Pradeep Kumar, University of the Witwatersrand, South Africa Presentation of project findings (10’)

Panel discussion (30’)

  • Clarisse Angelier, Déléguée Générale, Association Nationale Recherche Technologie, France - Presentation (PDF)
  • Stephen Meader, Director of the UKRI Future Leaders Fellowships, UK | 5
  • Charl Albertyn, Doctoral Researcher, Stellenbosch University, South Africa Q&A (20’)

13:10-14:10 - Item 6. Promoting inter-sectoral mobility with the government and the private not-forprofit sectors

This session will turn to the interaction of academic research with government and private not-for-profit sectors: how funders and institutions can support the researchers who traverse these boundaries, as well as the opportunities, barriers and risks involved in these transitions.

Moderator: Michael O’Neill, Canada Foundation for Innovation Presentation of project findings (10’)

Panel discussion (30’)

  • Andrew Kean, Director, Civil Service Human Resources Expert Services, Cabinet Office, UK
  • Göran Melin, Managing Partner, Technopolis Group, Sweden
  • Kolja Briedis, Researcher on the career of doctorate holders, DZHW Centre for Higher Education Research and Science Studies, Germany Q&A (20’)

14:20-15:20 - Item 7. Reconfiguring academic careers (inclusivity, reward and recognition, conditions)

The final discussion will focus on initiatives to support careers in academic research: to promote Inclusion Diversity and Equity (IDE), to promote a diversity of different careers paths within academia, and to improve the conditions in which those careers are built.

Moderator: Kim Huijpen, National programme on Recognition & Rewards/Universities of The Netherlands Presentation of project findings (10’)

Panel discussion (30’)

  • Stephane Berghmans, Director of Research and Innovation, European University Association - Presentation (PDF)
  • Denis Godin, Director, Scholarships & Fellowships Division, Natural Science and Engineering Research Council, Canada
  • Rob Copeland, Chair of Higher Education and Research Standing Committee, Education International, TUAC
  • Koutarou NAKAMURA, University of Tokyo and student association BEAST, Japan Q&A (20’)

15:20 -15:30 - Item 8. Concluding remarks

Verity Elston and Carthage Smith, will highlight the main take-away messages of the workshop



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