Research & KE Staff Development

Post Graduate Researchers

Within the Organisational & Staff Development Unit (Human Resources), there is a team dedicated to supporting staff development around research and knowledge exchange (KE). This webpage outlines some key initiatives which will help staff members to get the most out of their development in these areas as well as specific support offered for research staff and managers of researchers.

A range of development opportunities on different aspects of research and knowledge exchange are available to support research staff, knowledge exchange staff and anyone else interested in Research & KE in their current role and future career. The following programmes may be particularly suitable for you to check out:

SPIRAL (Strathclyde Programme in Research and Leadership) – A programme of stand-alone courses and events (typically between one hour to a day in duration) on a variety of topics, including grant & fellowship writing, research management & leadership, career development, publications, public engagement & innovation, personal effectiveness and research culture.

Mentoring @ Strathclyde – the University’s mentoring programme which supports staff with their career development. There are five schemes each targeted at different staff groups and activities, including dedicated schemes for research staff as well as those involved in knowledge exchange and external collaborations.

Strathclyde Supervisor Development Programme – A suite of courses on different aspects of postgraduate research supervision for those completing their initial Supervisor Training as well as for anyone interested in progressing their continuing development as a supervisor throughout their career.

Other Programmes – In addition to the programmes above, a range of other development opportunities are on offer through the Organisational & Staff Development Unit (OSDU) and beyond, such as the STEP programme for learning & teaching, leadership programmes and more. You are encouraged to have a look at the full development provision on these webpages or, for Strathclyde staff, on the internal Sharepoint Hub to determine which formats and topics of development will be most suitable for you.

As a member of research staff, you play an important part in the success of the University but there will also be aspects of your work that will be quite specific to your role. The following summarises some aspects to be aware of:


If you are working on a fixed-term contract, you will likely want to jump into your new role as quickly as possible. To support you in this, you will receive an Induction Pack from Human Resources on or before the start of your appointment with some key practical information and you will be given an induction checklist on your first day that you will go through with your line manager or a nominated mentor for your induction. There will likely also be some Faculty- or Department-specific induction activities for you to go through, such as safety training, and your line manager or induction mentor will be able to tell you more about these.

As a research staff member, you will be given specific research staff induction guidelines and will be invited to join one of our triannual Research Staff Inductions. Both will help you to find out more about the development & careers support available to you as well as to gain a better understanding of the expectations placed on you as a researcher; in addition, the Induction is an excellent opportunity to meet other new staff members.

More information about the induction process for members of staff can be found on our internal Staff Induction page.

With the University’s strong focus on research and research careers, there are a number of considerations that those managing research staff members should be aware of. A summary of the key information relating to relevant policies, processes and principles to support researchers can be found here.

Demonstrating the University’s commitment to supporting the career and professional development of our researchers, the University of Strathclyde has been a signatory of the revised Concordat to Support the Career Development of Researchers (also called Researcher Development Concordat) since 2020 and has held the EU HR Excellence in Research Award since 2011.

The Concordat is an agreement between stakeholders in UK Higher Education to improve the employment and support for research staff and researcher careers in the sector. As such, Strathclyde has developed an action plan to advance the implementation of the Concordat through various activities under the themes of environment & culture, researcher employment and professional & career development – more details can be found on our internal Sharepoint Hub as well as through our annual institutional reporting here.

The EU HR Excellence in Research Award, similarly, acknowledges the University’s efforts towards supporting the personal, professional and career development of research staff. To be awarded, institutions must go through a regular external peer review process, which Strathclyde has successfully completed for the past 10 years. More information about the award as well as our institutional review documentation is available here.

To ensure that new and current initiatives to support staff involved in research at Strathclyde are effective and relevant, the University runs regular staff surveys on researcher development, employment and research culture. These include the national Culture, Employment & Development in Academic Survey (CEDARS), the institutional CEDARS Lite initiative as well as – in the past – the Careers in Research Online Survey (CROS) and Principal Investigators and Research Leaders Survey (PIRLS). More information about these surveys and their outcomes can be found on our internal Researcher Development Concordat pages.





For further information you can contact us:

If you want to find out more, please get in touch. We really value your feedback.

Emma Compton-Daw, Academic Development Lead: Research

Maria Weikum, Concordat Officer

Lesley Tester, Development Assistant