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Agency and Networking

in Researcher Career Development

ERASMUS + Researcher Identity Development


Career Paths

What might your career path be after completing your PhD?

We hope the career paths of participants in our study will provide you with some sense of the range of post-PhD possibilities as well as the shifts that occurred over time in the jobs they took on. 


Each participant’s timeline distinguishes three themes: personal/life experiences, PhD and work-related experiences, and career thinking. 


You can read both a) across the themes to understand concurrent experiences and/or b) downwards within a theme to see changes that occurred.

Captura de Pantalla 2021-01-22 a les 13.

Catherine did volunteer work while raising her children and then started working in a local university research institute as she was unable to move due to family. Her initial role was as a data in-putter and research assistant before she decided to do a PhD. A publication during her degree was still often cited. On graduation at 48, she was offered a position as researcher in the same institute and joined the UK study in 2008 in her fifth year as a researcher still imagining a research-teaching position locally. While her family was older so she had less responsibility, she had ageing parents who required some visiting and caring for.​

What struck us about Catherine’s story was 

  • Handling anxiety and family health crises (personal)

  • Repeated research contracts and fellowship a time of relative freedom  (work experience)

  • Embedding institutional funds into salary by taking on administration and institutional resistance to making her position permanent (career thinking)

Discover other timelines by category



Labour sector


Explore the other themes


Researcher Identity Development (2020).

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Improving the careers and well-being of researchers

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