2011: Healthy Living

The second ECR workshop at the University of Birmingham.


The second Universitas 21 ECR workshop on the theme Healthy Living was held at the University of Birmingham School of Sport and Exercise Sciences from 13 to 15 December 2011.  Forty-one participants from 10 countries and 16 U21 member universities attended, from Asia, Australasia, the Americas, and Europe who gave some very positive feedback throughout the event.


Dr Anna Phillips, Senior Research Fellow, the University of Birmingham invited a range of speakers and trainers from across the UK to present at the event.  Topics for invited speakers and the keynote address were selected from the key issues comprising the theme of healthy living, namely: nutrition and ageing, exercise, sleep, and stress.  These were presented by mid-late career academics and included advice and tips for early career researchers as well as coverage of their topic and latest cutting-edge research.  Early career development training sessions were identified from the range of training needs faced by researchers.  These included: editing academic journals, interacting with the media, licensing and spin-offs, personal wellbeing, networking and communication, grant writing, collaborative design of research proposals, and career development.

Workshop Programme

The programme was developed by Dr Anna Phillips, with input from a member of the international office at the University of Birmingham (Jenny Lapworth/Matt Clulee).  Collation of nominations of workshop delegates and local graduate students to attend the poster session was coordinated by Gemma Marakas from the U21 Secretariat.  The programme included:

  1. Multiple networking opportunities in a relaxed atmosphere over refreshments
  2. Interactive learning sessions and group work
  3. Engaging talks and career development advice from academics
  4. Specific skills training and development for early career researchers
  5. An inspiring keynote address
  6. Opportunities to present and discuss ECRs own research via a poster session
  7. Opportunity to interact with graduate students from Birmingham working in similar research areas via a networking poster session

Following the feedback from the inaugural workshop, two poster sessions were incorporated into the programme which allowed some participants to present research and discuss it with the delegates, and also interaction with graduate students to allow further scope for potential collaboration.

Future U21 Workshops

It has recently been announced that Shanghai Jiao Tong University will host the next U21 ECR workshop on the theme The status-quo and the future of Ecological Civilisation 4 to 6 December 2012.