Postgraduate Researcher Events in Research Culture Week

There were three engaging events that took place during Research Culture Week (26th - 30th June 2023) for postgraduate researchers, beginning with Inclusive Doctoral Experiences and ending with the Doctoral Research Culture Café.

Inclusive Doctoral Experiences

On Tuesday 27th June 2023, there was a vibrant session on Inclusive Doctoral Experiences. This event was led by Rajani Naidoo (Vice-President (Community and Inclusion)), Joe Devine (Associate Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Doctoral)), and Rachel Arnold (Academic Director (Doctoral), and was supported by both the Doctoral Development Team and Research and Innovation Services. The session included one of the short films produced by the Race Equality Taskforce and engaging talks from students Karolina Pakenaite, Sanjae King and Van Ntassey, who shared their own doctoral student journey experiences.

Dr Janet Bultitude, Director of Studies for Doctoral Students in Psychology, also provided a talk which included the Department of Psychology’s efforts to create an inclusive doctoral experience by monitoring the diversity and experiences of their students. Here are two of many exciting areas the Department of Psychology is currently working on:

  • Establishing a working group for inclusion and culture that will have representation from all student bodies as well as staff that will oversee a new initiative to ensure that all genders and backgrounds are socially connected and included within their department. They aim for at least 75% agreement that student voice is present in ED&I initiatives.

  • Ensuring all staff who are seeking to recruit PhD students have completed recruitment training and will seek funding for a widening participation officer who will work to reach people who are normally underrepresented in the student body, encouraging a more diverse range of people to apply for PhDs.

The Inclusivity event was well attended by both staff and students and included a pizza and soft drink lunch during break-out discussions, where participants could share views on important questions linked to inclusivity, including suggestions for next year.

Navigating through Imposter Syndrome as a Qual Doctoral Researcher

Later, on Tuesday 27th June 2023, there was a student-led interactive session organised and co-facilitated by Vibhor Mathur and Vienne Lin from the recently formed Qualitative Research Community of Practice. At this event, which marked the six-month anniversary of its establishment, Qualitative Postgraduate researchers gathered together to talk about their experiences and share strategies on how to deal with Imposter Syndrome.

Doctoral Research Culture Café and afternoon tea

On Wednesday 28th June 2023, there was a Doctoral Research Culture Café with afternoon tea. Facilitated by Doctoral Engagement Ambassadors, this event brought together postgraduate researchers to talk about their understanding of research culture, describe what makes an ideal research culture and share their views on research culture in their department/ school and wider University, considering what works well and exploring what they would like to see.

Thank you

Thank you to everyone who attended and took part at these events during Research Culture Week to share your experiences, views and invaluable feedback.