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Building relationships and networks

Research Skills required by PhD students F1: Develop and maintain co-operative networks and working...

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9 March 2010

Research Skills required by PhD students F1: Develop and maintain co-operative networks and working relationships with supervisors, colleagues and peers, within the institution and the wider research community

Check this skill

By the time students complete a PhD, they should be able to answer ‘Yes’ to most of these questions.

  • Do you have regular contact with your supervisory team?
  • Do you know who has overall responsibility for research students in your academic unit/research centre?
  • Can identify your research network, and can you articulate the roles of the different people in it?
  • How often do you get to chat (virtually or face to face) to other members of your research community?
  • Do you keep systematic records of researchers you meet at conferences, seminars, or other meetings?
  • Do you have a mailing list, wiki, blog, or other device for maintaining contact with people with shared interests?
  • Do you share key papers and leads pro-actively with others in your network?

Evidence of this skill

These are examples of documents you can collect. Each implies a piece or work, which may be a good way for you to develop this skill.

  • An up-to-date contacts list for others in your research community.
  • A record of external research visits you have made or placements in other institutions/labs.
  • A record of invitations from you to researchers coming from outside your university.
  • A record of active participation in an on-line discussion group connected with your research field.
  • A record of collaboration in a research project.
  • A record of collaborative training activities with others from different faculties.

This page is based upon material produced by The Open University’s research school to support doctoral students.

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