What are career stories?
Careers stories are personal narratives and are focused on the experiences and decisions that the story tellers found significant. They offer real insight into the lives of the story tellers, illustrating what they consider important and providing an opportunity to learn about the decisions they have made and why they made them.
The Vitae Database of career stories has been developed to incorporate stories and collections of stories (projects) from a variety of sources. It provides a wide range of researchers' career stories told in their own words. The stories illustrate the skills and knowledge of these talented and well-qualified people.
Through these career stories we aim to demonstrate how the story tellers have applied their doctoral training in a wide range of personal and professional contexts.
Some of the story tellers completed their doctorate early on in their career, while for others it was undertaken mid or even late career. These stories explore the influence of the doctorate on the journeys that follow.
The database enables researchers to search for researcher career stories for different sectors, disciplines of study etc. You are able to upload your own story or collection of stories to this database and we would encourage you to do so.
Vitae career profiles projects
The 40 career stories in the ‘What do researchers do? Career Profiles of doctoral graduates' publication provides an insight into the relationship between researchers' doctorates and the career journey that they have taken.
A recent addition to the WDRD series highlighting the experiences of 40 doctoral entrepreneurs. The collection of narratives demonstrate the way in which researchers have used skills gained during doctoral training to develop careers as entrepreneurs. The stories also highlight the wider impact of doctoral entrepreneurs in a range of sectors.
A series of films which illustrate the range and variety of careers that people with a research training go on to do, both within and outside HE, in order to highlight turning and tipping points and inspire current researchers in HE about their own careers and decisions.
The focus of these career stories is the theory of ‘planned happenstance' illustrating how unplanned or chance events can influence career development opportunities.
As part of the 'Part-time researcher programme' Vitae conducted nine interviews with researchers who have successfully completed a doctorate part-time. This material is available on DVD on request, but can also be accessed via the Vitae website.
All of the researchers interviewed are different and have undertaken their doctorate at different points in their life and with different motivations. We hope that these extracts will be useful to current part-time researchers and those involved in training and supporting them.