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Eurodoc '14 Conference

The 13th Eurodoc annual conference will take place between the 25th and 27th of March 2014, in Budapest, Hungary. The event is organised by DOSZ, The association of Hungarian PhD and DLA students, will see early stage researchers (ESRs) from across Europe meet with various other stakeholders in the European Research area (ERA) and European Higher Education Area to discuss the position of ESRs, and how to face the challenges ahead.

The conference will include a number of plenary sessions and workshops which will consider a variety of issues affecting ESRs such as the structural changes being made to improve the position of ESRs and the professional development of researchers, as well as issues such as women in science and interdisciplinarity.

Early stage researchers are not often valued for their contribution to ERA, with many being poorly paid and lacking social security rights. Their status in universities often leads to the impression that they are not fully members of the research community. Yet ESRs represent the majority of researchers, and their numbers are only going to increase as governments and universities seek to train more researchers and do more and ever more research.

Furthermore, the majority of those starting a PhD have little chance to pursue an academic career, or a research career in general. In some places up to 95% of doctoral candidates will not stay in academia; the number of academic jobs is significantly less than the number of qualified researchers. How then are we to ensure that time spent completing a PhD remains useful and meaningful for these people? As the EU seeks to train a million more researchers by 2020, how do we ensure that these people receive the recognition they deserve for their work, that they are treated appropriately, and the work they do proves sufficiently valuable to them and to society once they have left academia? How do we ensure that there are jobs available for them?

This coming Eurodoc conference seeks to take a broad look at these issues and the general circumstances ESRs find themselves in.

The two last days are solely dedicated to Eurodoc Annual General Meeting (AGM) where there will be the presentation of the Administrative Board’s annual report, given by the President; the presentation of the financial report, including the accounts, given by the Treasurer; the ratification of decisions taken by the Administrative Board since the last General Meeting and the election of new a Governing Board and Secretariat.