what do researchers do

International Student Short Story Competition

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Calling all international students, you have until June 21st to enter the inaugural International Student Short Story Competition! Students from anywhere in the world can enter, providing they are studying at a UK university, or have graduated within the past two years.  Entrants can write about any aspect of their experience of studying abroad, such as the challenges of adapting to life in a different climate and culture, the ups and downs of ‘international living’, culture clashes, coping with food/cuisine in a new country, homesickness, love (or the lack of it), social lives, job hunts and struggles to make ends meet.

Run by the Newcastle Centre for the Literary Arts and judged by award-winning writer Jackie Kay,  first prize is a whopping £1,000, second Prize is £500 and third Prize: £200 so pick your pens up, get tapping on the keyboard and give it a go.

Full submission guidelines are on the NCLA website.


‘Creating Friction’ conference: 22/04/2010

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This Thursday is the ‘Creating Friction’ conference: the UK’s first interdisciplinary creative practice postgraduate conference. Working with steering committee members Isabella Streffen from Fine Art and fellow Creative Writer Jane Thomas has been both fun and useful.  When we started, we had no idea that chat between Creative Writing and Fine Art PhD students would throw up so much common ground to grumble about and share tips over, as well as highlighting future networking possibilities. Read the rest of this entry »

Make the most of your Academic Career

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So these days having a succesfull career in academia is all about publishing papers????

PLoS Map of Science

Wrong!!!! actually some of the most succesful academics in this University have their fingers in the business pie too…. for some real life inspiration and clues as to how you can make this kind of success your own come to


For research staff and academic staff in the Bioscience areas

Please book your place on this event via: http://researchstaff.ncl.ac.uk/rss//book?instance_id=1414

Title: Working with business: the ‘little’ and ‘large’ of enterprise

Date: 29 Jan 2010

Venue: Medical School Boardroom and Foyer

Time: Event 10:00 – 12:00; lunch 12:00 – 13:00

Objective: The objective of this event is to raise awareness amongst research staff and academic communities within the Bioscience area to the commercial potential of their research. This will be achieved by a ‘shop-window’ approach showcasing examples of the types of commercial engagement that have been of benefit to some of our researchers ranging from small but profitable entrepreneurial ‘sidelines’ of research to making your career out of Bio Business.

 Topics include:

  • Social and economic benefits of commercialising research
  • Running a business alongside research
  • Patenting and licensing
  • Commercialising research reagents
  • What’s it like working in a spin-out?
  • How to work with industry in your lab: commercial contracts in research
  • Consultancy opportunities

Confirmed speakers include:

Michael Whitaker, Dean of Development

Mark Birch-Machin, Prof of Molecular Dermatology (ICaMB) and Founder of Genesis Genomics UK

Melanie Hardman (Cancer Research Technologies)

Deepan Shah (Orla Protein Technologies)

Linda Taylor, Research Translator & Funding Development Manager

New Enterprise – making the difference, Tuesday 15th December 2009 , HASS Postgraduate Training Suite, 7th Floor, Daysh Building

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The Newcastle University Graduate Skills Framework was developed and tested with employers of Newcastle University graduates to determine how important they consider specific skills to be to the future of their business. The results from the 131 organisations that took part show that over 80% of employers consider personal enterprise, the ability to respond to opportunities and initiate change in order to drive continuous improvement, very important or important. In addition 75% of respondents thought the same about commercial acumen, the ability to recognise, utilise and create opportunities in order to contribute to achieving organisational goals.

These results are supported by the recent CBI report ‘ Preparing graduates for the world of work’ (2009). “ Newcastle University Graduate Skills Framework 2007 .

On the 15th December hear how current postgraduate research students, staff and graduates are developing and using enterprising and entrepreneurial skills to progress their career ranging from the application of bespoke training and experiential learning to the start-up of commercial and social enterprises from their research.’

‘Enterprising skills and entrepreneurial behaviour are widely recognised as important elements of success in a wide range of sectors and professions including research. What does this mean for you? How might you take advantage of the ‘culture of enterprise’ and the opportunities it offers to enhance your career prospects?

Idea Generation

Enterprisers – show employers you mean business

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What ARE you waiting for?

Researchers, We’re writing today to give you another shot at applying for Enterprisers. Due to the success of the October course we’re running another Enterprisers this January from the 11th – 15th Jan 2010. We thought that you guys also might have friends who would benefit from this amazing course. Maybe you know someone who has a Newcastle University degree but is having trouble finding work, or who has been affected by the economic downturn.

Please remember that eligibility is restricted to Newcastle University Graduates (i.e not current students). See our full eligibility statement by scrolling down to ‘how do I apply’.

Please cascade this flyer to your friends and family from Newcastle University and remember they can find out more here or by emailing me at c.a.m.kennedy@ncl.ac.uk

You can have a nosey at some pictures from the last Enterprisers here

Please don’t hesitate to contact me with any further questions or queries or if I can help in any way.

Best wishes,


Vitae Career Stories Portal

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vitaelogoVitae have launched their new Career Stories portal. From the portal there is access to the new “What do researchers do?” publications. One has a breakdown of destinations of doctoral graduates by individual subject area and the second contains some 40 career profiles of doctoral researchers. You should find both publications useful in considering your career options. The portal also includes links to a diverse range of projects where career stories are featured. Career stories on film will be available on the vitae site in the Autumn but in the meantime go to the site and click on the show reel to give you a snap shot of what is to come….