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Webinar: Engaged and Integrated: A Professional Development Workshop for PhD Students on Mitigating Academic Isolation

Two-Day Professional Development Workshop: 11-12 May from 10am—1pm



“Academic field-level integration (and its flipside, academic isolation) has been pointed out as an important factor in helping move ECR’s careers forward” (Belkhir et al. 2019)

Feelings of isolation are problematic as they reduce the ability of Early Career Researchers (ECRs) such as PhD students, post-docs and junior faculty to become successful senior researchers, potentially motivating them to abandon their research careers (Sibai, Figueredo and Ferreira 2019; Ponjuan, Conley, & Trower, 2011). Isolation may also have detrimental consequences for wellbeing and mental health, generating enduring feelings of alienation and significantly increasing the risks of burnout (Guthrie et al., 2017; Shaw, 2014). Social distancing during the covid pandemic has intensified the issue of isolation among ECRs.


This workshop is intended to support ECRs overcome obstacle to their integration in their research community, such as:

• Experiences of isolation in their research field

• Barriers to engagement with relevant researchers

• Difficulties developing and demonstrating competencies valued in their research community


• Understand field-level academic isolation and how it shapes research careers

• Self-diagnose the different types of isolation they are experiencing

• Map different strategies to get more integrated with their field


This workshop will help ECRs develop strategies to increase their integration within their field:

• Leverage paths to professional development offered in their research community

• Establish new research networks that will help them attain their strategic research goals

• Engage with their research to gain recognition of their value in their community


The sessions will be led by an international team of academic researchers: Dr Meriam Belkhir, Dr Mario Campana, Dr Marcia Christina Ferreira, and Dr Olivier Sibai. They hold senior and lectureship positions in prestigious universities and have run a variety of workshops over the course of their academic careers. Three facilitators have co-authored the research on which the proposed professional development workshop is based:

Belkhir, M., Brouard, M., Brunk, K. H., Dalmoro, M., Ferreira, M. C., Figueiredo, B., Huff A., Scaraboto D., Sibai O., & Smith A. N. (2019) "Isolation in Globalizing Academic Fields: A Collaborative Autoethnography of Early Career Researchers". Academy of Management Learning and Education, Volume 18, No 2, pp. 261-285. https://doi.org/10.5465/amle.2017.0329

• Zoom access details will be available after registration.

This professional development workshop is funded by Technè AHRC Doctoral Training Partnership.