Annual Report 2008, Göteborg

Annual Report 2008, Göteborg

As mentioned in last year’s Plan of activities, the Postgraduate Network established several aims for the period between September 2007 and September 2008, related to the following main areas:

  1. Organizing of the Pre-Conference in 2008 (Gothenburg University);
  2. Developing further activities to address a more significant number of postgraduate students, thus increasing the visibility and relevance of the Network;
  3. Strengthening the links between the Postgraduate Network and the EERA Council, Office and other Networks, as well as in relation to national associations and other institutions dealing with postgraduate students.


1. Pre-Conference 2008

This year’s Pre-Conference was the largest of all and required a very intensive coordination between the Network, the Office and the LOC. It succeeded in providing relevant key-notes and a Mock Viva workshop, considered by the participants to be of extreme relevance for their research. It also contributed to strengthen the relation to other EERA Networks, as three networks took part in an Information session (Networks 17, 25 and 27), which was attended by over 60 delegates.
The initiatives of the Best Paper Award and two Scholarships for Students from Eastern European Countries were also successfully carried out, thanks to the support of the EERA Council.


Issues for the future arising from feedback and Network Meeting:

  • Continue to develop the Mentorship Programme by improving its current guidelines and aiming at a more content-based approach during the sessions, as the quality of the sessions was found to be strongly dependent on the “quality” of the mentor (request of document).
  • Develop a list of Pre-Conference tasks and responsibilities to be available for Network, Office and LOC.
  • Develop a document with guidelines and suggestions for presentations to include on the web page and call for papers.
  •  Find a suitable way to deal with persistent no-shows.
  • Need to focus on methodological questions (maybe through a workshop with experts)
  • Develop a system to facilitate a more thematic arrangement of sessions (second alternative workshop, key words)

2. Developing further activities to address a more significant number of postgraduate students

During the year, the Network focused on Eastern European institutions to expand its activities. A brochure with information on Network’s activities was developed and sent to over 300 institutions in Eastern Europe. Many of the students from these institutions who attended the Conference mentioned having received the information.
Additionally, the web page was updated and new information was posted. Also a membership system was developed in order to allow networking.

Issues arising from feedback and Network Meeting for the future:

  • Continue expanding the Network through mailing information.
  • Improve web page to include information on publishing, funding and job postings.
  • Strengthen the connection to other networks.
  • Launch the Postgraduate E-Journal destined for students’ first publications and with a review process providing feedback to authors.

3. Strengthen the link between the Postgraduate Network and the EERA Council, Office, other Networks

This year’s collaboration between the EERA Office, Council and the Network was a positive and fruitful experience, without which the organization of the Pre-Conference would have been impossible. A data-base of Network’s templates was established at the EERA Office, to allow future Convenors and Senior Mentors to access all existing files. Also all e-mail communication was forwarded to the EERA Office, in order to inform about the Network’s activities. Additionally, the Network presented its reports at the Council and Convenors’ meetings.

Issues arising from feedback and Network Meeting for the future:

  • The collaboration between Office and Network must be slightly optimised.

 

Further Support

Apart from the financial support (see below) which can be given by the EERA Council, the Postgraduate Network would like to request:

  • The acceptance of Fiona Hallet, Edge Hill University (UK) as second Co-Convenor.
  • The establishment of a status of Fellowship for other supporters of Network activities, who are not operating at a Convenor level (with an official EERA certificate for accomplished activities).
  • The establishment of a task force of 3 members to support the Best Paper Award competition (as last year).
  • The nomination within Council and Convenors of a link-person responsible for “Postgraduate Affairs” to be contacted by the Network in case of need.
  • The official support from the Council and EERJ for the launching of the Postgraduate Journal.

Resulting from, a preliminary financial estimate for 2008-09 has been calculated and is outlined below:

Activity Approximate cost
Establishing two mini-scholarships destined for students from Eastern European countries (500 € each) 1000 €
Organization of the Pre-Conference (travelling and hotel expenses for international speakers and mentors1) 2000€
Attendance to Council Meetings from both Convenor and Senior Mentor 1000€
Approximate total 4000 €

The Convenors of the Postgraduate Network

Each network holds a Network Meeting during ECER and invites interested researchers to join. We have collected the network meeting minutes.
Read more