Strategic contribution

Our strategic contribution is viewed through four key lenses.



Our team exhibit the 'Power of People' values in all that we do:

  • we are committed to excellence and innovation
  • we care about individuals’ wellbeing
  • we encourage collaborative working
  • we create a diverse and inclusive environment
  • we inspire people to be leaderful, to help shape the University’s future

Ten priority examples have been selected to demonstrate how we implement these policies.

Influencing institutional policy & practice

Continuing Professional Development (CPD) for all mentors

CPD sessions were developed for all University mentors, those on RPD schemes, as well as those on other University schemes, such as GROW. 

Athena SWAN application and implementation

Contributes to data gathering for departmental and institution level submissions, and implementation of actions. 

Changing academic writing culture

This is achieved through the launch of writing retreats, and the annual WriteFest event each November. 

Membership of Senate

Contributes to the governance of the institution and making a civic contribution.

Contribution to core committees (FRICOM, RSDC)

Enables cohesive delivery of the strategies that improve researcher's environments. 

Researcher recognition prizes in STEM

Works with STEM facilities to formally celebrate and recognise researcher contribution. 

Parents @ TUOS

Aims to evolve the parent-researcher coffee mornings in parallel with Women@TUOSNET to steer and embed Parents@TUOS.

Good practice recommendations for researcher's environments

Involves a consultative tour of departments, and co-creating with researchers to help enhance the research environment. 

Tailored SRDS form for research staff

Co-created with researchers, this form is designed to help researchers with their career planning and progression. 

Inspire and Aspire expectation statements in MDH

Co-created with the Faculty Early Career Group, this is a list of day-to-day expectations from researchers and academics. 

Enhancing the research environment

Consistent induction practices for researchers

Faculty-tailored induction for doctoral researchers and new research staff. It supports consistent delivery and key message sharing. 

Support for supervisors through workshops and online content

Tailored workshops for supervisors. Online information and resource curation are available through the Research Leaders portal. 

Reviewing ethics applications for Professional Services

Staff are trained and approved to review ethics applications. They support Professional Services colleagues to engage in scholarly activity. 

Bespoke input in departments

Responding to departmental requests, such as away days, mentoring programmes, writing culture and methods. 

Encouraging researcher-led events through administering funding pots

Each faculty is granted ring-fenced funds to enable events arranged for researchers. Faculty RDMs coordinate the applications, fund administration and impact. 

Tailored training analysis in Arts and Humanities

This involves working with senior faculty colleagues to make the TNA as meaningful and consistent as possible for all doctoral researchers. 

Supporting the University's Research Staff Association (RSA)

Support is provided to enable a cohesive RSA that shares ideas and challenges.

Kroto Research Inspiration

Inspired by Sir Harry Kroto, this activity brings researchers together to communicate their research in a variety of ways.


Events, social media and web content that promotes the importance of self-care and wellbeing. It is available for all researchers. 

HR Excellence in Research Award

Awards are given to those who deliver strong HR Excellence Action Plans, with the aim to improve research environments.  

Scholarly activity 

Journal reviewing for the IJRD

Peer reviewing for studies in Graduate and Postdoctoral Education (previously IJRD). It aims to support the scholarly advancement of researcher development. 

LFHE Trust Me! research project

This project is funded by Leadership Foundation for Higher Education. It explores academic leadership behaviours, and how to create positive doctoral supervision relationships.

EEUK grant and conference presentation- Socially Enterprising Researcher

This looks at researcher's attitudes to enterprise and community collaboration, and how to fund social collaborations.

Design and launch of the Researcher Education and Development Conference (REDs)

This event has been designed and organised by people within the research sector, and calls for professionalism in the role. 

Book creation- '53 ways to enhance researcher development'

This manual is co-edited and delivered as part of the inaugural REDs conference. 

Services rendered activity

These are charged services for external organisations for seminars, workshops and programme design. 

EEUK grant and conference- IP and commercialisation resources

This is developed in conjunction with researchers, and industry and enterprise educators. Named 'This Little Piggy Went To Market', it is a set of training resources on IP and commercialisation. 

LFHE 'Fellowship Ahoy' research project

A Leadership Foundation for Higher Education-funded project. It helps to explore self-leadership, and assist with the development of research independence. 

Conference presentations relating to researcher development

Papers are presented at BERA, SRHE, EARLI, BSA, Vitae, EEUK and the University L&T. It gives researchers the opportunity to share practice and findings from their projects.

Value of the PhD study

This is a co-delivered research project with a Doctoral Researcher. It aims to educate people about the value of a PhD. 

Learning and teaching

Co-founders and contributors to NERDs- Network of Expert Researcher Developers

This replacement network has been co-created with Sheffield Hallam University. It aims to help share practice and create collaborations. 

Senior Fellowship of the HEA and portfolio assessment

Several team members are Senior Fellows of the HEA and one is on the University's panel of assessors for upcoming Fellowships.

Creation of an online RDF tool to encourage self-assessment of learning needs

A collaboration with the Computer Science department and EpiGenesys. It aims to develop a more accessible and interactive version of the Vitae Researcher Development Framework. 

Co-delivery of the Thirty30 festival of Staff Development

Driving the learning, development and teaching agenda by celebrating staff development, and creation of the 'three big ideas' for staff development. 

Workshop at RICON2016- 'productive partnerships'

Contributing to the University's Research and Innovation Community (RICOM) through conference 2016 workshop facilitation. 

Teaching on PGCert Professional Skills modules and MRes

Direct teaching on postgraduate research modules in the facilities of Engineering, Science and Health. 

ITN and DTC bid development to ensure impactful development for PGRs

Coaching for academic writing bids to broaden their understanding and ambitions for the development of their Doctoral cohorts. 

Recognition methods for 'Dedicated Outstanding Mentors'

Innovative recognition awards for mentors of both Research staff and thesis writers. 

Facilitating outreach activity

Working directly with local schools to engage A-level students in research. This is achieved by a seminar series and summer research placements. 

Brilliant Club partnership

Enabling researchers to develop their teaching proficiency by becoming partners on the 'Scholars Programme'. 

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