The Concordat to Support the Career Development of Researchers – UWE Bristol's plan for implementation and review.
The Concordat to Support the Career Development of Researchers was launched in 2008. It sets out the expectations and responsibilities of researchers, their managers, employers and funders. It aims to increase the attractiveness and sustainability of research careers in the UK and to improve the quantity, quality and impact of research for the benefit of UK society and the economy.
UWE Bristol is committed to enhancing the support for early career researchers as part of its strategic plan, and the responsibility for implementation of the Concordat is placed with the Pro Vice-Chancellor (Research and Business Engagement), the Research and Knowledge Exchange Committee, Human Resources, the Researchers' Forum Planning Group and Research, Business and Innovation (RBI).
Analysis and planning
Since 2011, a working group led by RBI and HR has monitored and overseen progress to date with respect to the implementation of the principles of the Concordat.
The group’s work takes into account the views of Early Career Researchers from the Careers in Research Online Survey (CROS), undertaken every two years since 2009, the UWE Bristol Staff Satisfaction Survey (most recently in 2017) and specific input from the Researchers' Forum, which meets twice yearly.
The working group has continued to monitor progress and published a two year internal assessment and an updated implementation plan, resulting in the UWE Bristol HR Excellence in Research Award being renewed in January 2014 and again in January 2016.
In March 2018, the working group updated the previous implementation plan, compiled a report highlighting progress made since 2016 and confirmed a new action plan to cover the period 2018-2020. This, and the previous action plans can be accessed below:
- HR Excellence in Research Action Plan 2018-2020 (New)
- HR Excellence in Research Highlight report 2016-2018 (New)
- HR Excellence in Research action plan 2016 - 2018 (New - updated following review)
- HR Excellence in Research four year assessment for external review
Concordat implementation activities
Since 2011, the following Concordat implementation activities have been undertaken:
- Establishment of the Researchers’ Forum for the launch of the Concordat.
- Concordat profiled on the institution's internal and external web pages.
- Promoted the Vice Chancellor's Early Career Researcher (formally SPUR) funding scheme.
- Researcher Development Framework embedded into the Researcher Skills Development Programme.
- Researchers' Forum used to promote Concordat-related discussion and development with both Early Career Researchers and Principal Investigators.
- Administration of the Careers in Research Online Survey (CROS) in 2009, 2011, 2013, 2015 and 2017. The outcomes and priorities have been and are being explored in the Researchers’ Forum.
- Establishment of a direct line of representation to the Pro Vice-Chancellor (Research and Business Engagement) via the Researchers' Forum. The Forum is convened by a senior research manager who sits on the Research and Knowledge Exchange Committee.
- Increase in the number of research staff representatives on the planning group of the Researchers' Forum (One per faculty).
- Increased involvement from Principal Investigators to contribute to career development activities run as part of Researchers' Forum events.
- Undertaken a review of skills provision for research staff across the University and made recommendations for the future development of provision.
Recognition of achievements
UWE Bristol has been granted the European Commission's HR Excellence in Research Award. The award recognises the University's outstanding work in developing and supporting its research staff.