Countdown to the National Postdoc Conference 2021

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The National Postdoc Conference 2021 (NPDC21), hosted by the University of Liverpool, takes place later this month during National Postdoc Appreciation Week.

The virtual NPDC21 conference on Friday 24 September is an opportunity for postdoctoral researchers to engage with industry stakeholders, funding agencies, policy influencers, researcher developers and career development professionals.

Click here to view the programme and register for sessions.

The NPDC21 coincides with the last day of National Postdoc Appreciation Week (NPAW), which celebrates the significant contributions researchers make to delivering and progressing research excellence.

The conference includes a keynote from CEO of UKRI Professor Dame Ottoline Leyser, and a panel on Collaborative Research Practices which will include Professor Julia Buckingham CBE, Former President of Universities UK, and Dr Annette Bramley, Director of the N8 Research Partnership.

Dr Saneeya Qureshi, Head of Researcher Development and Culture said: “In our collective sectoral aspiration to foster research talent and as a community, to adjust our values and behaviour to create a healthy and nurturing environment for all, there remains much work to be done to value the research talent that exists amongst the postdoctoral and ECR community. As such, it has been a privilege for me to work with the 24 representatives of the early career and postdoctoral community who have helped develop the framework and content for the NPDC21.

“Drawn from 14 research-intensive and non-research-intensive institutions from across the UK, these representatives have identified the gaps in researcher development needs which the NPDC21 will help to fill. They have also pinpointed conversations that are needed across the sector to help manage the tensions that are being encountered as we seek to (re)connect following the lockdowns of 2020-21.

“Open to all postdoctoral and research-related professionals nationally, this event will provide a unique, inclusive and well-timed forum for generating solutions and turning ideas into action, as well as helping postdocs develop their networks and support their wellbeing, bringing together expertise from a range of stakeholders and research recognition initiatives across all disciplines, covering national and global research agendas.

“We hope that the NPDC21 forms a useful inflection point for individuals and organisations alike to recognise the significance of postdocs and ECRs as connectors and innovators – wherever they may be located across the country. We hope that you will join us and look forward to seeing you there.”

Ahead of the conference, a series of informal networking sessions will take place, and are available to book now on the NPDC21 web pages. This includes a speed networking session on Monday 20th September, a fantastic opportunity to connect with delegates in advance of the conference itself.

You  can also enter the Virtual Poster Competition which will take place on Twitter between 22nd-23rd September, showcasing the innovative, diverse research that postdocs do. The competition will be judged by a multidisciplinary panel consisting of postdocs, industry stakeholders and chaired by the University of Liverpool’s Pro-Vice-Chancellor for Research and Impact, Professor Anthony Hollander.  There will be prize vouchers of up to £50 for the winners.

Those registered for the conference can download the NPDC21 app, which will enable them to create their own timetable of talks and events.

The event is hosted on behalf of the University of Liverpool by its Leadership, Organisational, Professional & Academic Development Academy, leading a national steering group of postdoc representatives from diverse research and non-research intensive universities, and research consortia across the country. This year marks the first time the UK NPDC will be held in the North, and the conference’s main sponsor is the N8 Research Partnership, the collaboration of the eight most research intensive Universities in the North of England: Durham, Lancaster, Leeds, Liverpool, Manchester, Newcastle, Sheffield and York.

NPDC21 sponsors include N8 Research Partnership, UKRI, IBM, Singular Talent, Codeswitch Consultants, C-DICE, Inkpath and Facebook Reality Labs.

Please direct any queries about the National Postdoc Conference 2021 to Dr Saneeya Qureshi, Head of Researcher Development and Culture on