The Careers Programme provides opportunities for everyone involved in scientific disciplines, from researchers to representatives from industry, training and educational institutes, science journalists to policy makers to engage with one another to discuss issues and ideas related to researchers either at their early stage or at stage of transition later on in their career.
With economic, social and environmental challenges facing Europe and the new mission-oriented Horizon Europe framework around the corner, providing a strong sense of direction to guide younger generations is a priority, in order to make it easier to develop relevant skillsets which can promote personal and professional growth. To reach this objective, a concerted effort by policy makers, business actors and educational institutions is of paramount importance.
To achieve this, the ESOF 2020 Science and Science to Business Programme Committees are launching a call for session proposals that will explore how career opportunities are evolving, as well as the effect that this evolution will have on both the education system and the job market. Contributions are welcome that address five main issues:
Proposals are welcome that examine and outline the success factors for career researchers moving from academia into (primarily R&D) functions in industry. Of special interest are the differences and commonalities between the two domains concerning, e.g., the role of team work, organizational objectives, success metrics for project work, or leadership practices. Also of interest are proposals that present best practices or new paradigms in university-industry collaboration that may include the exchange of personnel or the formation of joint research teams. These are not only beneficial from a career-development standpoint but can also foster a more effective transfer of technologies and application know-how between the parties. The role of the education system in facilitating the academia-industry transition is another topic of interest, as is the role of university entrepreneurship centres helping undergraduate and graduate students see a path to creating their own companies. Further examples of possible focus points are:
· Mobility in emerging fields such as the blue economy and space economy:
· Tools developed for researchers by the European Commission;
· Policies for intersectoral mobility;
· The role of the education system in facilitating the academia-industry transition; and
· How a life-long learning approach could be integrated into the career development of researchers at all levels.
It is the normal case that following completion of doctoral education, those who are successful in their ambitions to remain in research face over a decade of movement from one position to another, for example through post-doctoral fellowships, before finally obtaining a ‘permanent’ position.
We invite sessions that could focus on:
· What skills and training are needed to manage a career in these stages;
· What alternatives might exist to managing the trade-off between ensuring that the best researchers are recruited and minimizing any adverse effects on those working in this system;
· Career-tracking of researchers.
The 4th Industrial Revolution has been characterised by Klaus Schwaab as a fusion of new technologies in the physical, digital and biological worlds including artificial intelligence and digitisation with unprecedented levels of connectivity. New skills will be needed to navigate this disruptive environment.
We invite sessions that focus on:
· New career opportunities that will emerge in the mid- to long term as a result of the fourth industrial revolution, as well as how the education and advanced training systems need to evolve to accommodate them.
· How the horizontal transition between disappearing professions and new careers can be facilitated in order to avoid obsolescence of workers’ skillsets.
· How a geographically homogeneous implementation of the fourth industrial revolution can be put into place, in order to avoid diasporas and socio-economical destabilization, particularly considering the RIS3 and Horizon Europe frameworks.
There is a strong need to widen the base of entrepreneurs in Europe and to bring forward people who have the necessary combination of scientific, technological and business skills to create and/or grow science-based businesses. Entrepreneurial education plays an important role in giving researchers, particularly but not exclusively at the early stage of their careers, the capability and motivation to turn ideas into viable businesses. Acquisition of similar skills is needed to undertake innovation in an existing business, particularly if this involves a transition from being a traditional firm. Proposals are welcome both for sessions which analyse and evaluate approaches to entrepreneurship education and for those which engage delegates with science-based entrepreneurship directly.
· Approaches to entrepreneurship education in Schools and as part of degree or doctoral studies.
· Understanding the competences needed for successful entrepreneurship in science-based business.
· The value of competitions and prizes for motivating and giving visibility to new entrepreneurs.
· Educating entrepreneurs within companies (including for the purposes of spinning out);
· International comparisons and the role of cultural factors.
There will be opportunities to host networking events and interactive workshops within the ESOF 2020 programme. We welcome proposals from individuals, groups and organisations to coordinate:
· A careers fair to bring early career researchers and innovators together with industrial partners, public and private organizations and financial institutions.
· Sessions that provide practical career guidance on issues such as managing mobility and pensions.
· Thematic workshops that actively engage researchers, students, aspiring entrepreneurs on topics relevant to the science and science to business programmes.
· Sessions that support networking and collaboration between research organisations or different research communities.
· Session to support the development and interconnection of regional ecosystems that bring together academia, business and policy.