What is the Researcher Development Concordat?

The Researcher Development Concordat sets out the expectations and responsibilities of four stakeholder groups (researchers, their managers, employers and funders) to support researchers’ career development and to create a supportive and positive research environment.

The Concordat is structured around three principles:

Environment and Culture – Excellent research requires a supportive and inclusive research culture

Employment – Researchers are recruited, employed and managed under condition that recognise and value their contributions

Professional and Career Development - Professional and career development are integral to enabling researchers to develop their full potential

What does it mean for researchers at the University of Manchester?

As outlined in the Research and Discovery goal of the Strategic Plan, the University is committed to “providing a creative, ambitious and supportive environment in which researchers at every career stage can develop into and thrive as leaders in their chosen field”.

The University holds the HR Excellence in Research Award based on our sustained commitment to the aims and principles of the Concordat and became a signatory to the revised Concordat in May 2020.

The Research Staff Strategy Group oversees the governance of the Concordat. The group undertakes regular reviews of the Concordat Action Plans, reports on progress, and contributes to sharing practice across the sector.

What are we doing to implement the Concordat at Manchester?

Many actions and initiatives have been undertaken to embed the principles of the Concordat. For example:

The University’s Career Development Research Staff Statement of Expectations sets out the expectations and mutual responsibility of research staff, PIs and the University with the aim of creating a supportive environment in which researchers are able to work and develop their careers.

The Research Staff Strategy Group Excellence Awards have been introduce to recognise and celebrate the outstanding achievement, impact and successes of our researchers.

The Research Staff Dissemination and Collaboration Funds providing opportunities for researchers to network, disseminate and communicate their research as well as establish new partnerships and collaborations.

In 2020 the research staff promotions criteria were revised and outlining clear criteria for research assistants and research associates to secure promotion.

The annual research staff conference sits alongside a wide range of training and development opportunities offered by the Faculties and Staff, Learning and Development.

We support the research staff reps who lead on the University’s involvement in International Postdoc Appreciation Week.

The University is a partner in the Prosper project, a new approach to postdoc career development.