My week - 8 October 2014 - University Academic Fellowships

Deputy Vice-Chancellor Professor John Fisher reflects on the University Academic Fellowships scheme launched at the beginning of October.

Professor John Fisher

Last week saw the launch of the new University Academic Fellowships scheme. The University recruitment web site is open and this week we will have paper advertisements in the major journals and newspapers.  We will recruit to 250 positions over the next three years and I am hoping we will make approximately 100 appointments to start next summer in August 2015.

'Why are we doing this now?' and 'Why this type of scheme?' are two questions I am being asked.

The future of the University is dependent on its existing and future staff, and it is important we invest in the next generation of academic staff.

In the University and nationally it is recognised the demands placed on early career academics are increasing, and this scheme is designed to allow early career academics to develop in both research and in student education providing opportunities that are flexible and can be matched to the vision and ambitions of individuals, whilst providing necessary training and development in research, student education and leadership.  I hope existing postdoctoral fellows and early career researchers will find these interesting opportunities and we will be advertising more in 2015 and 2016.

Our approach has generated considerable interest in the sector, not only by its scale, but also through the distinctive features of the UAF scheme.  I hope all members of the University will support and promote the scheme and communicate it to colleagues around the world.

I am looking forward to the middle of November to get the answer to the question I am posing this week: How many applications do you think we will receive for the first 100 UAF positions?

And of course I am also looking forward to next September when the first 100 will start their academic careers at the University of Leeds.


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