1 June 2024 News

Key messages Report Workshop on Strengthening Research Careers

Date: 15 May 2024

Organizers: IrishRSA and ICoRSA

Title: Strengthening Research Careers

Watch the full workshop on Youtube

You can read and download PDF version here: Final_Summary Report_Workshop Strenghthening Research Careers



  • Dr. Mikey Creane, International Officer at IrishRSA
  • Dr. Bruno Pereira, President of the Portuguese Researchers Association, ANICT
  • Mrs. Carolina Varela, ICoRSA

The event began with a warm welcome from Dr. Mikey Creane, who outlined the workshop’s objectives:

  1. To create awareness of Action 4 of the ERA Policy Agenda and the support measures within the European Framework for Research Careers.
  2. To inform researchers on how to engage locally and nationally to address challenges related to research careers and professional growth.

Dr. Creane introduced the guest speaker, Luísa Henriques, Senior Policy Analyst and Advisor to the Board of Directors of FCT- Fundação para a Ciência e a Tecnologia. Dr. Henriques has extensive experience in these areas and is a co-sponsor of Action 4 on Attractive and Sustainable Research Careers from the ERA Policy Agenda (2022-2024) in the ERA FORUM.

Summary Report of Key Messages

On December 8, 2023, the European Member States approved the Council Recommendation on the European Framework for Research Careers. This framework, resulting from the European Research Area (ERA) initiative created in 2000, sets standards and objectives to be achieved by all stakeholders, requiring collective effort for implementation.

Components of the European Research Career Framework include:

  • A new definition of the researcher profession and research support personnel, including research managers.
  • Recognition, interoperability, and comparability of careers.
  • Recommendations on career assessment, development, and progression.
  • Instruments and initiatives to support implementation.
  • An observatory on research careers to monitor career progress.
  • The ERA Talent Platform, a one-stop online gateway to EURAXESS services.
  • The European Competence Framework (ResearchComp), aiding researchers in identifying skills and training needs, and helping employers identify researchers’ skills.

The Council Recommendation is a non-binding legal instrument requiring EU Member States’ will for effective implementation. Despite taking 23 years to consolidate a framework on research careers, extensive consultation processes with Member States’ representatives, universities, industry sectors, researchers, and other stakeholders contributed to its development.

Effective implementation at national and local levels requires:

  • Appropriate consultations and sharing of best practices between organizations employing researchers, researchers’ representatives (associations and unions), and all departments working directly with research.
  • Data collection at national and institutional levels on planning and monitoring research careers.
  • Engagement by researchers with host institutions via local/national research staff networks or associations to promote transparent research career initiatives and services.

Incentives and tracking systems needed by host institutions include:

  • Research assessment models adjusted to researchers’ career tracks, including time spent outside academia.
  • Career incentives allowing researchers to return to academia without losing career progression benefits.
  • Career tracking services and systems to monitor career tracks, profiles, and training needs of researchers.

Challenges and approaches to tackle issues affecting research careers:

  • Addressing the precarious nature of short-term, project-based contracts and lack of employment benefits through long-term investment.
  • Funding investment in tenure-track models promoting permanent positions and research career paths.
  • Promoting individual funding schemes that balance the focus on excellence-based research, broadening access to funding.
  • Rethinking state budget funding models for higher education institutions to align with Education and Research trends and needs.
  • Minimizing the use of precarious mechanisms, such as fellowships, in institutional practices.
  • Regular consultations with sector representatives regarding changes in law, funding, or career-related practices.


  • Dr. Mikey Creane, International Officer at IrishRSA and Research Fellow at the Regenerative Medicine Institute of University of Galway
  • Dr. Bruno Pereira, President of ANICT and Associate Researcher/Project Leader at i3S – Instituto de Investigação e Inovação em Saúde, Universidade do Porto
  • Mrs. Carolina Varela, Administrative Officer at ICoRSA

For more information: Council Recommendation on the European Framework for Research Careers

Video and presentation available here: