Heriot-Watt University is amongst the first 10 UK universities to successfully retain their HR Excellence in Research awards from the European Commission, as announced at the Vitae 'HR Excellence in Research' event in London.
The HR Excellence in Research Award recognises the positive actions undertaken to enhance the career development of researchers through implementation of the principles of the UK Concordat to Support the Development of Researchers. Its retention by Heriot-Watt University follows an intensive, peer review process coordinated nationally by Vitae and led internally by the Centre for Academic Leadership & Development (ALD).
Dr Ruth Neiland, Head of ALD, said, “Heriot-Watt University was one of the first universities in the UK to be granted the HR Excellence in Research award in 2010. We are very pleased that in 2015 this external review has once again recognised our commitment to research excellence through the extensive support we have in place for our vibrant research community”.
The task of preparing information and data to support Heriot-Watt’s HR Excellence in Research award submission and action plan was led by Dr Vicky Ingram, Researcher Development Coordinator, ALD and involved colleagues from across the University, including Research and Enterprise Services, Human Resources, Equal & Diversity and Athena Swan. An institutional team including Mr Mark Adderley, Director of Human Resource Development; Prof Alan Miller, Former Deputy Principal for Research and KT; Dr Steven Hammer, Research Staff Representative (School of Engineering & Physical Sciences); and Dr Ruth Neiland, Dr Rob Daley and Dr Vicky Ingram, Centre for Academic Leadership & Development was convened to have oversight of the preparatory process and participate in the final external review meeting which took place on 12 September 2014.
Congratulating Heriot-Watt’s institutional team on the successful submission, Deputy Principal (Interim) – Research & KE, Prof Duncan Hand, said, "Heriot-Watt is proud to retain the HR Excellence in Research Award. It provides external recognition of our ongoing commitment to supporting our early career researchers and helping them to develop into the research leaders of the future."
Heriot-Watt University’s experience of the review process also featured at Vitae’s HR Excellence in Research event in London on 23 January. Dr Rob Daley, ALD, participated in a panel to share the Heriot-Watt review experience with colleagues from other universities and help consider other proposals for a Europe wide formal accreditation process for HR management of researchers.