Earlier this year, the Eurodoc member organization from the Netherlands (PhD candidates Network of the Netherlands - PNN) took the initiative of developing the Professional PhD Program (PPP). This project aims to improve the career prospects and employability of PhD’s by giving them the opportunity to be temporarily employed at a company or public service during their research. The PNN is proud to announce that already three PhD’s have successfully started their PPP placement at the Dutch Ministry of Education Culture and Science and the Dutch Council for Social Development (RMO). The first experiences with the Professional PhD Program are very positive and provide a firm basis for a successful continuation of the project.
More information on following link: http://goo.gl/Up7cQJ
One of the major barriers to studying abroad continues to be the lack of accessible and relevant information. EduCoach provides personal advice right at the place where it is needed most. While potential students are searching for study information online, they will be able to chat in real time with a study abroad expert.
In conjunction with this year’s Berlin 11 Open Access meeting, the Max Planck Society and Right to Research Coalition will host the first-ever satellite conference to the Berlin conference series specifically for students and early stage researchers on November 18th in Berlin, Germany.
The meeting will convene approximately 85 students and early stage researchers for intimate discussions with leading figures in the Open Access movement, including researchers, publishers, policymakers, advocates, and — most importantly — students themselves. With generous support from the Max Planck Society, the registration fee will only be €20 and a large portion of the participants will have access to travel scholarships to cover all or part of their transportation and accommodation expenses.
Best practice of employee status for PhDs in the Netherlands threatened
Eurodoc is greatly concerned about new developments indicating that the employee status of PhD candidates in the Netherlands is no longer secure. At the University of Groningen, a group of scholarship-funded PhD candidates were given student status by the university. This group, along with the trade union Abvakabo FNV, filed a lawsuit against the university of Groningen in order to acquire employee status. The court of appeals in Leeuwarden has now overturned an earlier ruling and ruled in favour of the university, classifying the scholarship-funded PhD candidates as students.
This is the first time that a judge in the Netherlands has ruled that certain PhD candidates are not employees of the university. Earlier cases at the University of Amsterdam and Utrecht University have always resulted in rulings in favour of the PhD candidates, reaffirming their status as employees.
Eurodoc has viewed the employee status of PhD candidates in the Netherlands as a European best practice example since 2005. In the European Charter for Researchers, the European Commission states that early stage researchers, among which doctoral candidates, should be recognized as professionals, and be treated accordingly. The provision of employment contracts to PhD candidates that provide employee benefits such as parental leave, pension rights, sick pay, and unemployment benefits enhances the attractiveness of research careers within Europe. This is necessary to recruit and retain high quality researchers, and to encourage more young people to pursue a career in research. In alignment with the European University Association, as stated in the Salzburg II recommendations, Eurodoc has continuously promoted the professional status of PhD candidates.
Eurodoc explicitly expresses its strong concern that the ruling that classifies certain PhD candidates in the Netherlands as students might lead to crowding out of employee PhDs by student PhDs for financial reasons. This would be a setback for the Dutch system and could prevent progress towards a professional status for doctoral candidates in other European countries .
Eurodoc urges Dutch politicians to protect PhD candidates by enshrining their employee status in law with a guarantee of equal social-security rights for all PhD candidates independent of how their doctoral training is funded.
For more information please contact Patrick Tujip (+31877841381 firstname.lastname@example.org)
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The video contest ’Invest in our Future – Invest in science’ invites you to look at the world afresh and realize the great contribution of science to our lives and the amazing possibilities it opens for our future. Show us why you think investing in science is important and you can win 500 Euros! All information about the contest can be found at: www.investinscience.eu and at http://www.facebook.com/investinscience?ref=hl
Eurodocs Career Development workgroup have completed a comprehensive study of collaboration between Eurodoc Member Associations and National Trade Unions. Please read the report here: Survey on the Collaboration between Eurodoc Member Associations and National Trade Unions
EURODOC MISSION AND VISION STATEMENT
Eurodoc’s mission is to represent and consolidate the community of doctoral candidates and junior researchers in Europe in their pursuit of a decent professional life. We aim to be the effective and efficient voice of doctoral candidates and junior researchers at the European level.
At present, despite efforts of over more than a decade to develop a single European Research Area (ERA) and the European Higher Education Area (EHEA), there still exist strong discrepancies in how young researchers are treated throughout Europe and disciplines. Doctoral candidates and junior researchers should be fully recognised as professional workers, and as such they deserve appropriate working conditions and the recognition of their role in policy debates at their respective institutions and at all levels and policy circles where such debates are taking place.
In particular, doctoral candidates and junior researchers working in academia have to be recognised as a vital part of the HEIs “work-force” given their major role in the research and teaching environments, and in the long-term sustainability and success of the HEIs. The work of doctoral candidates and junior researchers should be granted with adequate funding, social security and mobility rights. Researchers, funders and employers should work together to ensure this outcome.
Similarly, employers and funders outside of academia should recognise that holders of PhDs are an added-value to their workforce as highly-skilled professionals with research experiences.
In order to improve young researchers’ working conditions, Eurodoc will:
- Constantly monitor the social and working conditions of doctoral candidates and junior researchers in different member countries and institutions,
- Voice the need for appropriate social security rights of doctoral candidates and junior researchers,
- Encourage institutions to implement the European “Charter and Code” for Researchers,
- Promote “best practices” and encourage the institutions/countries where unfavourable conditions are found in order to improve and elevate their standards,
- Assist its members in announcing and disseminating information concerning unfavourable practices to discourage their continuation
In order to advance the quality of higher education and research in Europe, Eurodoc will:
- Elaborate common position statements on policy issues and teaching and research practices that are of concern to doctoral candidates and junior researchers,
- Represent the positions of doctoral candidates and junior researchers to the relevant European bodies and stakeholders,
- Participate actively in the main institutional events of the European Research Area and the European Higher Education Area
Our vision is an ERA and EHEA in which doctoral candidates and junior researchers are duly recognised and respected for the essential roles they play.