Research funding opportunities: information on available financial support provided by the private or public sector to researchers and/or their families in the form of grants, fellowships, benefit programmes for individuals and families, loans, etc.
Job opportunities: information about research positions within universities and/or research organisations (in the public and private sector) and job opportunities for the researchers´ family.
Significant efforts have been made by the EU to improve policies on Human Resources and Mobility. Embedded in the Ljubljana process (2008), the Communication from the Commission to the Council and the European Parliament ‘Better Careers and More Mobility—a European Partnership for Researchers’ (EPR), 2009, establishes open recruitment of researchers as one of its priorities. Member States and the European Commission are to ensure that all publicly funded researchers’ positions are openly advertised online, in particular through EURAXESS.
In this context, networking and cooperation with the main stakeholders is essential for EURAXESS members. We need to understand and be aligned with EU policy development and provide researchers with accurate assistance. There is a need for constant contact with key players: ministries, policy makers, public authorities, the NCP People Network, HR departments from host institutions and any other agents involved in mobility issues (see Estonia 3, Croatia 1, Poland 2).
The concept of Jobs implies a vast knowledge of researchers’ rights. Therefore we recommend that BHOs disseminate the European Charter for Researchers and the Code of Conduct for the recruitment of Researchers when informing about jobs, as these principles aim at providing better job opportunities and more rewarding careers for researchers and allow greater movement between institutions, between the public and private sectors and across borders. Several countries have been very active in promoting and implementing the Charter and Code, such as Germany (see Germany 2), Ireland (see Ireland 3) or Norway (see Norway 2).
Besides, it has been proven that one of the most valued services by researchers is the EURAXESS assistance concerning Jobs. The most powerful means of information is with no doubt the EURAXESS Portal, both at the national and the European level. It is critical to enhance and facilitate the use of the Jobs section, whenever possible. Several success experiences are already available throughout the network:
- In Austria (see Austria 6) and Norway (see Norway 3), policy makers have endorsed the publication of research job vacancies in the EURAXESS Jobs section on the portal. In Greece (see Greece 1) the BHO followed a specific strategy to increase job postings within its network, the organisations registered in the portal, and other research institutions.
- The EURAXESS Jobs section can be fed with useful information for researchers and institutions, not only at the European level but also at the national and local levels (see Austria 11, Bulgaria 1, Slovakia 3). Promotion and assistance about FP7 funding opportunities and also about national fellowship systems is a must (see Spain 11).
- In some countries, the language has been outlined as one of the major problems for posting vacancies. In Estonia (see Estonia 8), efforts were made to facilitate translation services, hence enabling most universities to post their jobs.
- Newsletters are widely used in many countries (see Croatia 6, Austria 9, Poland 10). They are helpful for informing the network, policy makers and research institutions about current open calls and other funding opportunities.
Information on job vacancies in the private sector is often a request made by researchers. However, approaching industry is a difficult task for the network members. Different strategies such as targeted meetings, exchange of experiences, cooperation with EEN network or joint seminars are used to bridge this gap between industry and academia (see Bulgaria 2, Ireland 6). Besides, we also recommend taking advantage of the available information and expertise in this field gathered in the ERAMIND project (see Ireland 7).
Other additional activities for improving research funding opportunities and job-related information such as the following are always welcome:
- Information Open Days, fellowship fairs for researchers or institutions (see Croatia 7, Poland 5, Poland 16) seem to work well.
- There are promotional materials, such as Guides for Incoming or Outgoing researchers (see Croatia 5, Slovakia 2, Spain 6), containing information on funding opportunities that can be printed out and distributed and/or included in the EURAXESS portal.
- Researchers are usually eager to share their cases so whenever success stories of good experiences in mobility are available, we recommend you to take advantage of them! (see Poland 11, Spain 8)