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Programmes to foster intersectoral mobility

To prepare PhD students for careers outside of the universities, several activities can be included in the curricula of the SSH Graduate Schools. These are:

  • Offering transferable skills modules such as presentation and pitching skills, work-life balance, time management and entrepreneurship. It is advisable to offer formal recognition in the form of credits or a separate certificate, such as the Skill Passport issued by the Central European University
  • Example: Université Paris-Saclay organises a regular competition called ‘My thesis in 180 seconds’ in which students present their PhD-research in condensed form to a general audience
    [Thesis in 180 seconds competition]
    [View on Youtube]
  • Inviting experts from private and public sectors to deliver workshops or seminars and meet PhD students with whom they can share ideas about careers outside of academia
  • Fostering entrepreneurship by stimulating students to turn their outcomes into marketable innovations and knowledge
  • Example: The University of Helsinki Doctoral School in Humanities and Social Sciences offers UH offers Impact and Business Collaboration Services for Researchers. They have also made a co-creation guide to enhance the collaboration between universities and companies
  • Educating PhD students about the way in which their research has (societal) impact and how it can be defined and evaluated
  • Example: The University of Helsinki Doctoral School in Humanities and Social Sciences offers an Impact Clinic for doctoral candidates in which the particular challenges for these disciplines are taken into account [Blog]
    [Innovation Services] .
Best Practice

Best practice: Universität Leipzig – study trips for graduate students. The goal is for the students to meet representatives of other sectors in different countries to widen their views and understanding. This residential trip is usually 7-10 days long and offers first- or second-year doctoral researchers a chance to apply theory to real world settings and discuss the impact of research on employees in the areas affected or stakeholders involved in the area’s various policy domains. It is paired with a preparatory seminar in Leipzig. The trips are run by academic experts on the region. [PDF-link]

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