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Susi Poli on behalf of the EARMA Professional Development Working Group.

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Presentation on theme: "Susi Poli on behalf of the EARMA Professional Development Working Group."— Presentation transcript:

1 Susi Poli on behalf of the EARMA Professional Development Working Group

2 Contents Overview of the theory around research management (RM) and main issues arising from the body of literature Professionals in HE and who the blended professionals are Dealing with definitions of research managers (RMs), with the array of positions/tasks and with a minimum set of requirements Other tricky concepts: working spaces and academic/cultural capital RMs and all the other professional groups Issues of recognition of role and contribution to research

3 The theoretical framework Professionals in HE HE Professionals can be categorized on the basis of their approach with existing structures and of attitude to respect boundaries among functions and roles bounded: old style-professionals, shaped around the definition of own role in terms of maintaining well-defined processes as well as reluctant to deviate from core functions; cross-boundary: are performers using boundaries to construct and modify their identities … actively work across a number of locales to contribute to institutional capacity building; unbounded: are those showing a sense of being keyed into networks that facilitate the exchange of information and intelligence that can be invested in the institution … acting as a pathfinder; blended: have an ability to work in ambiguous space between professional and academic domains … actively using a mixed background to advantage (Whitchurch, 2006).

4 The theoretical framework Who the blended professionals are Blended professionals are hybrid or multi-professional identities, to stress their blend of profiles, both of academia and management; so they appear as those neither part of the senior management team nor of the research staff (Whitchurch, 2008) They have been recruited through dedicated appointments that span both professional and academic domains (Whitchurch, 2008b) Not necessarily PhD holders, but individuals with academic credentials, such as masters and doctoral qualifications, performing quasi-academic functions coupled with the possibility of moving into an academic management role (Whitchurch, 2008a)

5 The theoretical framework Who RMs are and array of positions and tasks The array of RM roles seems as much wide as before and positions range from those traditional: research contract officer to outreach programme coordinator; from enterprise officer to information development officer; from national research programmes officer to the EU and regional one, from training officer, so on (Bushaway, 2003) To the newer ones, met in todays UK Higher Education (HE) job market, that include: research facilitator, doctoral funding development manager, researcher training & development manager, so on

6 The theoretical framework The minimum set of requirements for RMs A minimum set of requirements for RMs should include: - research skills, the laboratory environment and practice, ICT for research, E-search, introduction into the unit and the wider university, pricing research, working in a research group, IP, setting research goals and measuring attainment, writing successful grants, research results, writing up, contracting; - non-research skills, presentation, writing for publication, setting deadlines, PM, team-playing in research, personal initiative-taking, communication and interpersonal skills (Bushaway, 2003)

7 The theoretical framework Working spaces where RMs perform and interact Working spaces may be seen as inhabited by ambiguity with possibilities for boundary-crossing and fluidity of identity (Allen- Collinson, 2009). Third Spaces of Collaboration are populated by multi- professional teams working together on long/short-term projects and are frequently characterized by a common spoken language (Whitchurch, 2008a); it seems a fruitful combination of expertise, from the academic and the professional side, aiming to achieve institutional goals The shifting arena as the shared space of tension, where RM crosses into the academic domain. Reason of such a tension is that research, for its own definition, is intricately associated with academics, so that such a space comes to be the one in which all the tensions and struggles come up with evidence. But an increased understanding of this space could enhance collaboration and maximize effort and outputs (Shelley, 2009)

8 The theoretical framework Dealing with academic and cultural capital Academic capital tells of RMs contribution to research and, more often, lies on the evidence that they are more academically qualified (with PhD or post-doc awards) than their counterpart academics (Allen-Collinson, 2009) And just academic capital seems to belong more to new RMs (to mark the difference between traditional and new RMs) because typically trained as PhDs in the fields in which they work and so more skilled once involved in planning/execution of research projects (Schuetzenmeister, 2010)

9 The theoretical framework Dealing with academic and cultural capital Shared research in the shifting arenas means production of cultural capital for academics and RMs RMs cultural capital stands for accumulation and value of the research support capital that they hold So that credibility and recognition of contribution to research lie (not on the title) but rather on accumulation of such cultural capital, namely their own form of managing the research activity, influenced by the local cultural context and the broader policy research context of HE (Shelley, 2009)

10 The theoretical framework Relationships with other professional groups Issues of moral exclusion for RMs that, in some cases, seem to be invisible professionals (no recognition of contribution, role, over-qualification, so on) Sometimes they have been marked as others by academics and, among negative labels, frequently named support or non- academic staff (Shelley, 2009) But issues of tension come up not only with academics in the shifting arenas, but also with other administrators and professional groups in HE RMs deemed as othered by colleagues and perceived as snobby people (Allen-Collinson, 2009)

11 The theoretical framework Issues of recognition of role and contribution to research Over-qualification, academic and cultural capital, all issues impacting on recognition of contribution to research (Shelley, 2009) What is going on about recognition across Europe: the Report on the Project to Create a Professional Development Framework for Research Managers and Administrators by ARMA (UK), other associations have shaped own frameworks, f.e. Vitae UK and its Researcher Development Framework or AUA UK and the Continuous Professional Development Framework Research leadership and research management (LFHE tender ):Investigating Research Leadership in the context of a changing research landscape: a scoping study

12 Bibliography Allen-Collinson, J. (2009). "Negative 'marking'? University research administrators and contestation of moral exclusion." Studies in Higher Education 34(8): Bushaway, R.W. (2003). Managing Research. Open University Press Hockey, J. and J. Allen-Collinson (2009). "Occupational knowledge and practice amongst UK university research administrators." Higher Education Quarterly 63(2): Schuetzenmeister, F. (2010), University Research Management: An Exploratory Literature Review, European Union Center of Excellence, University of California, Berkeley, Institute of European Studies Shelley, L. (2009). "Research managers uncovered - Changing roles and 'shifting arenas' in the academy." Higher Education Quarterly, 64(1), pp Whitchurch, C. (2008a). "Shifting Identities and Blurring Boundaries: The Emergence of Third Space Professionals in UK Higher Education". Higher Education Quarterly, 62(4), pp Whitchurch, C. (2008b). Professional Managers in UK Higher Education: Preparing for Complex Futures. Final Report. London: Leadership Foundation for Higher Education (

13 Thank you for attention and all comments welcome Pleased to keep talking about these issues

14 Who we are and what we need? Summary of questionnaire Kristel Toom Tallinn University, Estonia

15 Contents Results of Questionnaire Purpose Respondents Expectations Professional Development WG Report Plans for next year

16 Why Questionnaire? Professional Development WG 2011 WG goals: Training Certification Need to know what members expect To get input and …to map needs … to start with the PD framework

17 About the Questionnaire The questionnaire was sent out to all members in November 2011 …and later to other professionals Web Questionnaire 39 correct responses You still have possibility to participate!

18 Responses by Country UK (26%) Estonia (13%) Spain (8%) Ireland (8%) Germany (8%) Denmark Netherlands Norway Portugal US Kosovo Switzerland Slovenia Italy Finland Czech Republic Austria

19 Membership Status of Respondents StatusPeriod Results 49% individual 31% institutional 21% non-members 38% members since 2011

20 General Information of Respondents 51% 49% GenderAge 28% 3% Results

21 Level of Education Mainly in fields of natural/biosciences 15 and management/economics14 46% have masters degree Unfortunately we didnt ask experience in research… Results

22 Nature of Work PositionAreas Position doesnt show the scope of the work! Results

23 Years of Experience The majority of more experienced professionals! (Sphinx moth) Results

24 Expected Events for Professional Development Annual Conferences (65%) Working Group Meetings (23%) Regular Trainings (21%) Expert Meetings (16%) Certificate Trainings (15%) Professional Events (13%) E-learning (11%) Country Visits (9%) 44% attend professional trainings on regular basis mainly organised by professional associations The majority have no preference in where trainings take place 72% – organisation has a positive attitude to RM trainings 88% – possibly receive resource for participating Results

25 Expected Areas of Trainings Research Management (27%) Research Policy (17%) Project Coordinating (14%) Cooperation with SMEs (13%) Funding Opportunities (12%) Full Costing (12%) Financial Reporting (11%) Analysing Research Performance (10%) Auditing (9%) Project Writing (9%) Contracting (8%) Results

26 How long should a training last? 2 days (44%) 1 week (13%) 1 day (10%) 1 month (3%) 1 year (3%) Depends on training and location Results

27 Regional Groups Attend (92%) Regularly (46%) Occasionally (46%) Depends (8%) Idea for future developments! Results We asked how people would feel about EARMA regional groups idea The response vas very positive

28 Professional Certification System 62% has no certification system in their country 28% dont know 10% have Importance very important Results How important you consider development of a professional certification system for research managers?

29 Purpose of Membership It is a great organization To share experience and expertise, to exchange practices, to compare my way of working and thinking about the role with others, to participate in WGs, to explore the filed of research management more in depth. Networking and exchanging information with peers. I also hope that EARMA will develop the training offer to research management offices. I think there is a lack in research policy and research management training (most trainings available concentrate on funding programmes) and I hope EARMA will develop these trainings. It is the reference association for the profession at European level. I think it is a good idea to have a strong European Network for Research Administrators who can influence the EC and build up good research support. Networking…

30 Professional Development Working Group Report and Future Plans Kristel Toom Tallinn University, Estonia


32 Existing frameworks, literature and ideas Andersen, J. (2011). Global Professional Development: SRA AC: Montreal ARMA (2011) A Professional Development Framework for Research Managers and Administrators Bushaway, R.W. (2003) Managing Research, Maidenhead: Open University Press. Kulakowski, E.C. & Chronister, L.U. (Eds.). (2006). Research administration and management. Sudbury, MA: Jones and Bartlett Publisher. Schlesinger, P. (2011). Global professional development – a US Perspective: SRA AC: Montreal UniSA (2011) Fundamentals in World-class Research Administration

33 Research manager will take on the daily responsibilities connected with the research programme such as: Financial management; Logistics; Infrastructure; Human resources issues; Quality assurance; Project management; Networking; Marketing and promotion; Sponsor management; Liaison with the university; Liaison with research services; International and other collaborations; Partnerships and links management; Organization and administration; Media relationships. (Bushaway, R.W. (2003) Managing Research, Maidenhead: Open University Press. p )

34 Supporting research at a university level involves: Assisting the process of making research grant applications; Supporting and enabling university research contracting; Undertaking commercialization and exploitation; Providing information on research opportunities and its dissemination Networking; Managing sponsors (corporate level); Marketing and promoting research; Facilitating individual and group support in goal-setting; Helping to set the corporate research strategy; Developing policies and procedures conductive to the growth of research; Assisting with research planning at every level; Supporting research performance evaluation; Encouraging cross-disciplinary research interaction; Assisting with research costing and pricing; Intellectual property management. (Bushaway, R.W. (2003) Managing Research, Maidenhead: Open University Press. p 152)

35 Research administrators are brokers, translators, intermediaries, and helpers who value the long-term process. But mostly, research administrators are believers in the vital importance of research. Traditionally a research administrators role involves some or all of these tasks: Understanding the nature of the principal investigator (PI)s research; Assisting the PI with pending funding opportunities information; Promoting positive relationships between the PI and research sponsors; Helping the PI apply for a grant or contract, especially through assistance with budgets, forms, deadlines, approvals, and signatures; Recording and reporting on related institutional information; Ensuring that the PIs proposal complies with institutional policies and sponsor requirements; Assisting the PI with the financial and managerial aspects of awards; Ensuring the integrity of the institutions financial and nonfinancial processes related to he research function. (Kulakowski, E.C. & Chronister, L.U. (Eds.). (2006). Research administration and management. Sudbury, MA: Jones and Bartlett Publisher. p 75)


37 Developing Professional Development Framework for EARMA Professional Development matrix is based on Results of the Questionnaire Existing Frameworks Literature Own Experience Our first unfinished version of PDF reflects analysis of existing frameworks and literature!

38 A M L






44 Relation with other issues Financial Issues Legal Issues Academic Affairs Marketing Communication Statistics Information dissemination Personnel issues … RMA

45 General Skills/Attributes Language skills Team/networking Computing Time/Self Management Critical Thinking Problem-solving Communication Flexibility … René Magritte The Son of Man 1964 Integrity Responsibility Patience Helpfulness Empathy Commitment Sense of Humor …

46 Thank you for your attention! On behalf of the EARMA Professional Development Working Group

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