Moderator Staffan I. Lindberg (Professor in Political science, YAS member), Eva Wiberg (Vice Chancellor), Göran Hilmersson (Dean of the Faculty of Science/Natfak), Åke Ingerman (Dean of the Faculty of Education), Agneta Holmäng (Dean of the Sahlgrenska Academy), facilitator Gabriella Olshammar (Postgraduate studies officer). Photo: Young Academy of Sweden
On 7 November The Young Academy of Sweden had the pleasure to host the career seminar How to succeed as a researcher at the University of Gothenburg (GU) together with Future Faculty Sahlgrenska. The Vice Chancellor and deans from several faculties participated to provide young researchers with an array of career advice specific for GU.
1. Sebastian Westenhoff (Professor in biophysical chemistry, YAS member) presented the Young Academy of Sweden 2. Seminar audience 3. Co-chairs Future Faculty Cecilia Bull (Researcher, Sahlgrenska Academy) and Vilborg Palsdottir (Postdoctoral research fellow, Sahlgrenska Academy) presented Future Faculty. (Click to enlarge) Photo: Young Academy of Sweden
About 80 persons had signed up for the seminar. Vice Chancellor Eva Wiberg presented the organization and explained e.g. that as a researcher one has the possibility – but not the right – to be assessed for a position as a Lecturer (sv: lektor)/Associate Senior Lecturer (sv: Biträdande universitetslektor, BUL) or Senior lecturer. She also encouraged the attendants to follow the online Staff Portal. Regarding who decides about recruitment Wiberg explained that lecturer positions are decided by faculties, and Professor positions are decided by the Vice Chancellor. GU strives for competitiveness and internationalisation.
Agneta Holmäng (Dean of the Sahlgrenska Academy) presented the career paths at Sahlgrenska Academy (SA), and mentioned that they work to increase transparency for the recruitment processes. It could sometimes be challenging she commented, that incoming researchers bring large grants with them, and attached to them also certain conditions which may be hard to fit in the organisation and its strategies.
Göran Hilmersson (Dean of the Faculty of Science/Natfak) mentioned they recruit a lot at the present. A decrease in the number of students and heavy infrastructure costs were challenging. However, Natfak now has a new board and is on its way addressing the challenges. A problem, Hilmersson further stated, is the tendency to play safe and not take the risk hiring Associate Senior Lecturers. This might hinder the possibility of significant breakthroughs. He also underlined the fundamental importance of diversification and achieving gender equality in their environment.
Åke Ingerman (Dean of the Faculty of Education) highlighted that recruitment advertising is very expensive. At the Faculty of Education, they had been forced to recruit based on a direct need of teachers, which may have been bad for research. He stated that several careers were possible, to become teacher or a researcher.
Eva Wiberg concluded that her duty is to make sure the organisation is highly functioning in order for researchers to perform their task. However, everyone has to teach Wiberg underlined. She stated that GU wants more autonomy regarding recruitment, and that strategic decisions should be made at the faculty level.
In answering a question from the audience about how to succeed as a researcher, Göran Hilmersson (Natfak) said:
– Do good research, hopefully good discoveries, be first author, and affiliate with successful environments.
Åke Ingerman (Faculty of Education) also reminded researchers to not put their life on hold; it must be possible to also for instance be a parent.