Call for content

Call for content for Vitae Researcher Development International Conference 2017

Workshop deadline: Friday 2 June 2017
Special interest session: Friday 21 July 2017
Poster deadline: Wednesday 2nd August 2017


In the year that the UK celebrates 100 years of the modern PhD, the 2017 Vitae Researcher Development International Conference will explore: 

  • Enhancing organisational capacity for innovative professional development to maintain research excellence
  • Attracting and retaining highly skilled researchers including global, European and UK developments
  • Meeting the future development needs of researchers for a wide range of careers
  • Evidencing the value of researcher development and its impact on research and innovation outputs, researcher careers, economic prosperity and society

The Vitae Conference is the largest dedicated event that brings together all those with a strategic and practical role in developing researchers. Last year's event saw around 400 participants, the largest number yet, including researcher development practitioners, trainers, career specialists, heads of graduate schools, pro-vice chancellors, funders, research managers and other professionals from the UK and abroad.  Participants at the conference will: 

  • Explore the political context and instruments for embedding researcher development, including the HR Excellence in Research Award and the review of the UK Concordat
  • Discuss strategic and practical ways of sustaining professional and career development for research staff and postgraduate researchers
  • Share ideas and practice with a network of colleagues who have a stake in developing researchers.

Workshop proposal submission - Deadline closed

Workshop themes:

Taking account of the conference themes, proposals should address at least one of the following areas:

  1. Engaging research leaders, principal investigators and supervisors in professional development
  2. Developing a pipeline of research talent through strategies to attract and retain research talent, and mainstreaming equality and diversity in the research environment
  3. Leadership development of early career researchers
  4. Evaluation and impact of researcher development to understand its contribution to research, society and economy
  5. Supporting researchers’ mobility including international, inter-sectoral, interdisciplinary and virtual mobility
  6. Researcher development within doctoral programmes, including doctoral training centres/ partnerships, Innovative Training Networks (ITNs) and other cohort based models
  7. Researcher development across boundaries including international collaborations, inter-cultural competences, international researchers’ experiences, business/industry collaborations and engaging society through open research.
  8. Policy and practice in building capacity in research informed teaching
  9. The contribution of researcher development to developing ‘REF – ready’ researchers
  10. Enabling career transitions between academia to industry
  11. Innovative uses of the Vitae Researcher Development Framework

Workshop proposals must:

  • Clearly state aims and intended learning outcomes for participants
  • Provide a clear abstract of not more than 250 words
  • Demonstrate novel approaches to delivering a planned, structured, interactive session
  • Show how the workshop addresses at least one theme outlined above.

We encourage novel and creative approaches to delivering workshops, such as but not limited by: world cafés, open spaces or panel sessions. 

  • Workshops will be 55mins or 80mins.
  • Workshops proposals that provide opportunity for in-depth analysis and discussion, or have several presenters from different organisations will be considered for 80 minute sessions. Workshops with different international perspectives are especially welcome. 
  • Proposals with a commercial focus must be submitted as a special interest session, poster or an exhibition stand.

Special interest session submission - Deadline closed

Special interest sessions last 20 minutes to explore an area that must:

  • relate to one of the workshop themes
  • have a flexible, exploratory interactive structure
  • is a specialist topic of interest to only some participants

and address at least one of the following:

  • present initial or undeveloped idea or a commercial product
  • share emerging outcomes/ results from a project that you would like to discuss
  • introduce participants to novel approaches to supporting researcher developers

Posters submission - Deadline closed

Posters are an ideal way to communicate your ideas, projects and outcomes to a wider audience. The posters must be related to at least one of workshop themes to showcase innovative practice or research. The presenters should use the posters should stimulate discussion, gather feedback, provide an overview or to explore a theme in more detail. Posters of research into researcher development are especially welcome.

There will be opportunity set aside in the programme for participants to look at the posters when presenters will have an opportunity to speak with colleagues about their posters.

Poster presenters must attend on Monday 11 September 2017 to respond to interest in their poster. Posters are limited to one poster per presenter. Poster format: Maximum size A0 (841mm by 1189 mm).