The project “Promoting Collaborative Doctoral Education for Enhanced Career Opportunities” (DOC-CAREERS II) was conceived as an exploratory action to test the feasibility of Regional Workshops as an instrument to foster university-business/enterprise collaboration. DOC-CAREERS I project had confirmed that many views on opportunities, challenges and barriers hindering university-industry cooperation were shared by both partners. In this sense, the “diagnosis” of the situation was sound and the common barriers in Europe well identified. DOC-CAREERS I Case Studies had also confirmed that not only were there no “one-size-fits-all solutions” but also that they tended to be specific to every case including local or regional cultural differences, that is, “the way we do things/business here”. In order to capture this diversity, DOC-CAREERS II looked uniquely at how universities work with their regional partners in doctoral education across Europe.
The regional focus of the action allowed us to identify examples of university collaboration with local SME, large R&D enterprises, RTD performers, NGO’s and other industries (health care, cultural, etc.). Building on DOC-CAREERS I outcomes, a series of five Regional Workshops was held in selected locations, geographically spread throughout Europe (Eastern, Southern, Central-North), with the intention to bring together interested partners in cooperation through doctoral education.
DOC-CAREERS II was a project funded by the Seventh Framework Programme (FP7) through a Support Action within the 2008 People Work Programme.
The general aim of the Regional Workshops was to identify specific tools and incentives that might have wider application across Europe. The specific objectives were:
- To disseminate the outcomes of DOC-CAREERS I in the framework of the “open innovation” model: strategies and good practices on university-industry relations; models and the degree of structure of university-industry doctoral schemes; employability of doctorate holders and its relation with transferable skills; good practices in the tracking of doctorate holders.
- To broaden evidence of good practices validating DOC-CAREERS I outcomes and identifying new models of university-industry collaboration.
- To identify strategies and good practices used by SMEs and other local partners to approach universities and address how their access to university research could be enhanced.
- To bring into the dialogue SMEs who might not be “convinced” of the added value and benefits of university-industry cooperation to identify specific issues to be addressed at local level.
- To explore the perspectives of employability of doctorate holders in the region, mobility opportunities and its relation to regional efforts to reinforce doctoral employability considering the benefits of employing creative workers and their professional expectations.
Promoting Collaborative Doctoral Education for Enhanced Career Opportunities
The Royal Flemish Academy of Belgium for Science and the Arts (KVAB)
30-31 January 2012
Dublin Institute of Technology
21 September 2010
Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne
10 December 2010
Kaunas University of Technology
5 April 2011
Norwegian University of Science and Technology
7 June 2011
University of Camerino
11 October 2011
Methodology and Expected Outcomes
The potential of the Regional Workshop instrument to be promoted in the context of the future work of the EUA Council for Doctoral Education (EUA-CDE) was analysed, specifically in relation to encouraging the wider “take-up” of best practices in university-business/enterprise collaboration involving doctoral education. Other possible ways forward were explored, in particular with the other three partners of the Responsible Partnering Initiative (EIRMA, EARTO and ProTon Europe). DOC-CAREERS II also served to validate and revise the Responsible Partnering Guidelines which we committed to discuss with the other partners.
The expected general outcomes of DOC-CAREERS II were as follows: achieving greater awareness of skill developments and mobility strategies in doctoral training in Europe with a view of career development and employability; promotion of the benefits of tracking doctorate holders´ careers; gaining empirical insights for reforming doctoral programmes; improving regional cooperation and networking in a dialogue with different potential employers; widening the dialogue with potential employers; fostering greater ability for doctorate holders to choose courses according to the needs and demands of different sectors and multiple careers; building lasting partnerships, networks and joint initiatives aimed at improving collaboration between private and public sectors.
Prof. Rymantas Kažys, Director of Ultrasound Institute, Kaunas University of Technology, Lithuania
Prof. Eckhard Steffen, Director of Graduate Studies, Universität Paderborn, Germany
Dr Leopold Demiddeleer, Future Businesses Director, Solvay S.A. Research & Technology, Belgium and President of the European Industrial Research Management Association (EIRMA)
Dr David Joyner, Director of Business Partnership and Engagement, Research and Innovation Office, Bangor University, United Kingdom
Peter van der Hijden, European Commission
Dr John Smith, Deputy Secretary General, EUA
Dr Lidia Borrell-Damian, Head of Unit, Research Partnerhships, EUA
Dr Lidia Borrell-Damian, Head of Unit, Research Partnerhships, email@example.com
DOC-CAREERS II is a project funded by the Seventh Framework Programme (FP7) through a Support Action within the 2008 People Work Programme.