The Biannual EURAXESS Conference took place in The Hague from 15th -17th May and a rich delegation from the EURAXESS Spain network participated. Representatives from the Universidad Autónoma de Madrid, IMDEA Agua, AGAUR, Universitat Oberta de Catalunya, FICYT, the Universidad de las Palmas de Gran Canaria, Bizkaia:talent; the Agencia Andaluza del Conocimiento, the Universidad Santiago de Compostela , and FECYT spent 3 days in The Netherlands learning and discussing with European peers about all the services EURAXESS can provide: cultural integration for international researchers, mobility services, researcher career development, intersectoral mobility activities, etc.
The opening of the ceremony was in charge of the Deputy Mayor and Alderman for the Knowledge Economy, International Affairs, Youth and Education of The Hague who welcomed conference participants and stressed the importance of mobility of professionals for the Netherlands. Later, Kitty Feringher (European Commission) gave a speech about the past, present and future of EURAXESS stressing the importance the initiative has in supporting the development of the European Research Area. Ilse Schenk and Dirk Haaksman (Nuffic), hosts of the conference, also welcomed participants.
During Tuesday and Wednesday, there were a number of keynotes devoted to policy trends: dual career services and its importance to facilitate the mobility of researchers within Europe (Julie Sainz, European Commision), the first findings of the intersectoral mobility surveys of the EURAXIND project (Janet Metcalfe, CRAC-Vitae), gender equality (Barbara Limanowska, European Institute for Gender Equality), RESAVER, the pension fund for researchers (Johan Huysse, VSNU). There was also a session devoted to researcher mobility trends.
The rest of the conference time was devoted to a number of workshops about different EURAXESS aspects: how to support incoming researchers, improve dual career services, promote EURAXESS beyond Europe, stay connected with the European diaspora, contribute to gender equality through EURAXESS, develop researcher career development centres, etc.
FECYT, as Bridgehead organization (BHO) actively participated in the organization of a number of workshops:
- How to optimize your national network. In this workshop, FECYT explained its strategy to have an active and committed network. Activities such as the network meetings, involvement of the network in European projects, and an up-to-date website where highlighted. EURAXESS Spain is one of the largest networks of the initiative.
- Recommendations and resources for supporting career development. In this workshop, FECYT presented the policy worked performed during the PIPERS project. One of the main outcomes of the project was the “High level policy recommendations to foster researcher career development in Europe”