Increasing awareness of researcher mental health

Recently, there has been an increasing amount of attention paid to the mental health of researchers. Research is an activity that aims to confront the boundaries of human knowledge: it demands excellence from all researchers, who aim to publish in peer-reviewed publications, submit grant applications, achieve tenure or defend a PhD thesis. Researchers identify with and are dedicated to their work to a very great extent. A recent report noted that researchers simultaneously demonstrate high levels of job satisfaction and high levels of stress and depression. Nevertheless, hard work does not have to lead to suffering.

Family Friendly Research to boost Science Careers of Women

The balance between professional and personal life plays a key role for successful careers of European researchers, especially for women scientists. As far as employment and reconciliation of work and life are concerned, female employment rates remain low especially in Southern Europe and East Europe and in general even more for women with low education. Antidiscrimination laws have been adopted, but gender gaps are still large. Lack of child care services and care facilities for the elderly combined with rigid work arrangements make it hard to reconcile work and family life.

Displaced Migrants in Higher Education: Findings from a study on Pathways and Support

In January 2018 the University of Manchester and MCAA launched a survey on the practices and attitudes in higher education institutions with regard to displaced students and academics. The aim of the survey was to identify the best practices to integrate displaced students and academics into higher education institutions. Together with previous work, the current study highlights the need to raise awareness among researchers and institutions about the various existing practices adopted in Europe to integrate displaced students and academics.

Tackling Europe’s biggest healthcare challenges

The Wild Card initiative, launched this month by EIT Health, seeks to engage the biggest and brightest minds in implementing ground-breaking and high-risk ideas in healthcare. The two areas of focus for 2018 are: application of artificial intelligence and big data to diagnostics and finding non-pharmaceutical solutions to antibiotic resistance. In this inspired opinion piece, Jan-Philipp Beck, COO at EIT Health, who is based in Munich, Germany, tells us about the main challenges ahead to find solutions to these issues.

Quality check on the newer UK universities

The UK University league tables do not use scientific contribution as a core value of university competition at national level. To assess the relative performance of the newer UK universities created after 1992, following a government reform graduating technical colleagues to the status of universities, can be done by looking at their scientific output. In this article, Solomon Habtemariam, principal lecturer and leader of Pharmacognosy Research laboratories at the University of Greenwich, UK, assesses the scientific publication output, 25 years after the creation of these newer universities. This makes for a sobering reading to any other European countries who have brought newer universities on stream.

The secret to making family life compatible with an academic career

EuroScientist celebrates International Women’s Day 2017 by covering a study giving food for thought on the issue of work/life balance for career scientists. Germany has traditionally looked down on mothers pursuing their career in the immediate few years after their children were born. However, a new survey by the German Centre for Higher Education Research and Science Studies (DZHW) shows that there are several key factors influencing researchers to stay in academia. These include the ability to self-determine their working hours, a flexible workplace and the existence of a long-term professional perspective. Clearly, respondents to the survey from both genders appear to strive for a better work/life balance. But it may take another generation for old habits to die.