Early Career Researcher Connections

The future of genomics research relies on those early in their careers. The challenges they face have become more numerous and more difficult in recent decades. Some of the issues are specific to genomics research, but many are shared across disciplines.

In response to direction from our ECR members for action, we have reached out to the New Zealand Association of Scientists to work together in this space.

Below we describe some of the ideas generated so far. Please email our ">ECR Connector, Georgia Carson if you would like to be part of this activity.

Who are early career researchers? Many organisations have specific definitions. Sometimes, these definitions exclude people who would reasonably be considered early career researchers (e.g. post-grad students). For GFANZ, an early career researcher is anyone who self-identifies as one.


What that might look like

There has been a clear and repeated call for mentors from the early career researchers in GFANZ. Broadly speaking, this is a direct connection with someone who has both the experience and the interest in assisting with the navigation of a multitude of (often complex) issues. One challenge to acknowledge is that so many potential mentors are very time poor. Too many obligations and too little time left. These issues are much broader than our GFANZ community. Working with other groups to leverage experience and manage time commitments is the strategy we are taking. GFANZ will be a first partner with the New Zealand Association of Scientists to develop a model and programme of mentorship that can work in Aotearoa’s science ecosystem.

Ideas Gathered

This is an unsorted list of ideas / issues we have gathered together. Please add to the list.

  • Special topic workshops with a community / forum to follow up with. These should be done by subject matter experts, not necessarily scientists.
  • The workshops could have some sort of certification / acredititation
  • Ethics
  • Professionalism
  • Non-Academic science careers
  • Course in writing by a science editor “How to tell a science story without jargon”
  • C.V. writing (not just the standard NZ one)
  • Grant writing
  • Negotiating during hiring process
  • Starting and running a business
  • Intellectual Property
  • Potential issue around student advisor not valuing them spending time on these things.