#vitaechat - Balancing caring responsibilities with a research career

Join us on Tuesday 5 December 2017 at 12.00 until 13.00 (UK GMT) for our #vitaechat via Twitter on balancing caring responsibilities with a research career. 

Our moderator, Dr Katie Wheat will be joined by the panel of knowledgable researchers who have experienced the ups and downs of caring in academia and who are able to share their tips with us and answer questions such as:

  • What are the challenges of balancing caring responsibilities with a research career?
  • What is the landscape of support for fixed term staff taking parental leave?
  • What are the pros and cons of flexible working in academia?
  • How can I stay productive and motivated while working part-time?
  • Will working part-time or taking a career break negatively impact my research profile?
  • Where can I get support with these issues?


Dr Joanne Kamens, Executive Director, Addgene, Boston

Dr Rogier Kievit, Programme leader, Executive processes Group, University of Cambridge

Dr Kimberley O’Sullivan, Research Fellow, University of Otago, New Zealand

Professor Kirstein Rummery, Professor of Social Policy, University of Stirling

Dr Ruth Stirton, Lecturer in Healthcare Law, University of Sussex

Dr Kelly Stockdale, Lecturer in Criminology, York St. John

Here is a Storify of the #vitaechat:

This Twitter chat is part of our 'Focus-on: an inclusive research environment' theme.

Visit our Focus On page for resources and information to help you achieve your goals.  

What is a Twitter chat and how do I participate?

A Twitter chat is a live discussion on a set day and time, usually facilitated by a designated person, around a particular topic. If you have never used Twitter or taken part in a Twitter chat before, there are a lot of helpful guides around (e.g. 10 Commandments for Twitter and Using Twitter in university research, teaching and impact activities)

How do I join in?

  1. Log in to Twitter (you will need a Twitter account) at 12pm(UK time) on Tuesday 5 December 2017
  2. Search for the hashtag #vitaechat on Twitter and select the “Latest” tab
  3. Follow @vitae_news
  4. Our #vitaechat moderator, Katie Wheat, will post a series of discussion questions from the @vitae_news account
  5. Tweet your replies to the discussion questions and add your thoughts around the topic
  6. Don’t forget to add the hashtag #vitaechat to each of your tweets so that it shows up in the discussion stream

Why should I join?

Twitter chats are an open discussion, allowing participants from around the globe to meet and chat in real time around a shared interest. They are often fast-paced and exciting, with lots of different conversations happening simultaneously.

Benefits of joining a Twitter chat include the opportunity to

  • broaden your network outside of your usual circles
  • find out more about a new topic
  • be exposed to different perspectives on a familiar topic
  • offer advice, share your expertise, and contribute to a pool of knowledge.

What if I can’t make it at that time?

We will record the tweet chat and post a summary of it here afterwards so that you can view the chat if you missed it.