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What does development look like?

We are signatory to the Researcher Development Concordat. As part of our obligation, we have put in place two key actions:

  • To give our research staff 10 days time, per year, for career development, based on somebody working full time (100%). This is now written into our research staff contracts
  • To recruit a careers with research consultant to provide career development resources for all our researchers.

The '10 days' is recommended in the Concordat but at Leeds we have decided to go a step further and make it an entitlement.  It should be used for career development but it is up to you to determine what career development means for you.

Your Career Development is your responsibility but there is support to help you do this. You need to take a strategic approach to it, research it, plan it and discuss your plans with your PI or line manager to come up with a formal development plan.

To help explain this in more detail we have created a guide outlining how development happens. There is also a case study showing how the 10 days can be used.

Our list of development possibilities, it keeps growing:

  • Career Development opportunities via OD&PL - with the new Careers Development programme
  • Coaching & Mentoring – this works both ways, be a mentor and a mentee
  • Careers Consultation or Informational Interviewing - ask people what it is like to work in a place
  • LinkedIn Learning - access to thousands of courses
  • Grant writing workshops - find out if you are ready to apply for funding and how to get started
  • Secondments - consider doing a brief stint in a company or department
  • Employer Engagement Events - take advantage of career fairs or events from Nexus
  • Organisational activities, e.g. projects (not research) – development doesn't have to come from work
  • Independent Research - doing some pilot work or supervising a summer project
  • Representation on committees - ones you are interested in, great for getting negotiation and influencing skills
  • Contributing to policy - can be both within and outside the institution
  • Organising seminars/events - can be hard work but lots of benefits to be had
  • Consultancy
  • Work placement / shadowing
  • Outreach and Engagement - any event where you get to talk to the public or stakeholders in your research
  • Teaching / Supervision - make it count, use your experience to apply for Associate Fellowship of the HEA
  • Conference participation! - taking part not just attending
  • Peer Review - paper, abstracts and funding bids
  • Commercialisation - take advantage of the knowledge and experience in Nexus
  • HEA accreditation through our PRiSE scheme – make teaching and supervision count
  • Leadership development - you can access our leadership and management content
  • Think tank engagement - share experiences with other experts in your field
  • Writing a funding proposal - this could be for a small award or be part of a larger award
  • Deliver training - on your research area or a topic of your choice
  • Consultations with careers professionals - join one of our career cafes
  • Undertake career coaching
  • Peer observations of practice - watch others doing their roles, join networks
  • Organise a mock interview and feedback session for a job
  • Participate in an action learning set - or start your own? How about career peer learning groups?
  • Critical reflection on practice - keep a track or note down all the development you have and add to it, can you build on it?