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Connect with Wallonia - Come 2 Wallonia

Project description

Preparing experienced researchers for leadership positions

This individual-driven research training and career development programme is designed for experienced researchers (ERs). They will be provided with the expertise and experience needed to become the next generation of leaders with strong interdisciplinary skills. Specifically, the EU-funded C2W project will provide 30 fellows the opportunity to deepen their core scientific discipline while broadening their range of scientific skills and widen their professional networks at the international level. As such, the project will also lead to scientific breakthroughs, making Wallonia more visible as a scientific destination. Also, interdisciplinarity will be an essential part of the mandatory training programme as the fellows need to focus on problems too complex to be answered by a single discipline.

Objective

The new fellowship programme “Connect with Wallonia – Come 2 Wallonia” (C2W) offers 30 2-year fellowships for Experienced Researchers (ERs). The programme will be implemented by the University of Mons (UMONS) and the University of Namur (UNamur), both located in the Walloon region of Belgium. UMONS and UNamur are two medium-sized universities which together have 21 research institutes and a total of 1300 senior researchers and nearly 900 PhD students. C2W was created to offer Experienced Researchers an exceptional opportunity to develop new skills and competences in order to become the next generation of leaders with strong interdisciplinary expertise. C2W should also lead to scientific breakthroughs, making Wallonia more visible as a scientific destination.
The focus of C2W
C2W aims to emphasize the interdisciplinary aspect of research and will offer all Fellows the opportunity to implement a research project with a strong interdisciplinary orientation. This will be ensured by different actions, including having interdisciplinarity as an evaluation criterion and all Fellows being integrated in one of the interdisciplinary research Institutes of UMONS and/or UNamur and being supervised by a principal investigator (PI) and a co-PI with competences in different disciplines. In addition, interdisciplinarity will be an essential part of the mandatory training programme which will include, among other things, participation in ‘creativity meetings’ with scientists from all disciplines and a one-week intensive training on interdisciplinarity. Interdisciplinarity can also be reinforced through a secondment in an institution whose strength lies in another discipline. C2W’s emphasis on interdisciplinary research stems from the fact the Fellows focus on problems or questions that are too complex to be satisfactorily answered by a single discipline. Many current scientific, social, or economic issues need to be approached from an interdisciplinary perspective to make significant advances to the state of the art. Thus, the interdisciplinary nature of C2W will pave the way for scientific breakthroughs. The advantage for researchers is that they will collaborate with a broad range of staff members, extend their networks, and develop important scientific and transversal skills. These skills, together with experience in interdisciplinary research, will be important assets in becoming research leaders in their field.
Another focus of C2W is to prepare Fellows for leadership positions after the end of their fellowship. The programme offers them the opportunity to develop leadership skills through classroom courses and workshops, but Fellows are also expected to train to leadership in their own projects, including project management, creative thinking, and collaborations with others.
Benefits for several groups
30 Fellows will have the opportunity to deepen their core scientific discipline while broadening their range of scientific skills during their 2-year fellowship. They will implement a research project with a strong interdisciplinary aspect on a topic of their choice, within the wide range of UMONS and UNamur research areas. They will have the opportunity to widen their professional networks at the international level, which will provide them with advanced career opportunities. Through organized events, they will acquire additional skills such as leadership, ‘out of the box’ thinking and Open Science abilities. These combined experiences will support them to become the next generation of leaders with strong expertise and interdisciplinary skills.
C2W will enable a two-way knowledge transfer between the Fellow and his/her PI/co-PI which will benefit from highly talented researchers to boost research in their labs and strengthen their international network.
UMONS and UNamur have already collaborated successfully in the framework fellowship and training programmes (funding of joint PhDs, joint technological platforms). In

Coordinator

UNIVERSITE DE MONS
Net EU contribution
€ 2 206 800,00
Address
PLACE DU PARC 20
7000 Mons
Belgium

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Region
Région wallonne Prov. Hainaut Arr. Mons
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
Links
Total cost
€ 4 413 600,00