Researchers’ Futures

The British Ecological Society (BES) and The Physiological Society (TPS) are providing support to post-doctoral researchers looking to develop a sustainable career in academia through our Researchers' Futures programme

Stand out from the Crowd….

Researchers’ Futures:  A mentoring programme for post doctoral researchers

Whilst postdoc positions help to develop scientific skills and knowledge, they can cast emerging scientists in the shadow of their Principal Investigator and with fewer permanent posts and greater competition for grant funding, the transition to scientific independence and that first permanent post can be difficult.

An article published in Nature in 2016 suggested “young scientists today face a harsher, more competitive, stricter, more dispiriting workplace than their bosses and senior colleagues did at the same stages of their own careers.”  As the guardians of their disciplines, learned societies have identified a role in smoothing this transition, to allow the best scientific minds and future leaders to flourish, providing support in an open and inclusive way.

With thousands of members that have been through, are going through, or are looking to make this transition, the BES and TPS is pooling this expertise and drawing on external experts to provide advice and guidance on forging an independent scientific journey.

We are piloting a year-long support programme for 30 members looking to take the next step.

Our programme kicks off with a workshop in October 2018, followed by a series of participant shaped and agreed webinars over the next 12 months.  By working together with the TPS we hope to match up researchers with a friendly and critical friend who can provide the peer support and external perspectives as you draft grant applications, refine CV’s and share the challenges of finding that first permanent post.

Places on the scheme are limited to 30 post doctoral researchers and will be allocated equally to 15 BES members and 15 TPS members.  Priority will be given to those who are near the end of the current post doctoral contracts but we encourage anyone who feels they will benefit from the programme to apply

The cycle we intend to be following

Application process:

9th July – Applications to join the scheme are opened

23rd September – deadline for applications to be received

Who can apply?

  • You must be either a 1st or 2nd postdoc in the UK, or a recent returner to academia, and have the support of one of the following: your supervisor / department head / an alternative departmental coordinator / a colleague
  • You should have less than 18 months on your current contract and must be a member of either TPS or BES
  • You will need to agree to monitoring and impact for three years afterwards

How to apply

Please do download the application form (in the useful documents below) and upon completion return to Karen Devine regardless of whether you are applying as BES or TPS members