Our Research Environment and Culture

At the University of Birmingham, we value and support inclusive, open and collaborative research. Our civic identity and global research reputation are built on a diversity of shared experiences, ideas, opinions and practice – both internally across the breadth of our disciplines and externally with our peers, partners, and stakeholders.

As we continue to strive for excellence, we believe that equity and collegiality must inform our actions thereby helping more of us to succeed. Our research culture encourages creativity, risk, responsibility, and transparency, which in turn strengthens the outputs and outcomes of our work and has a significant and lasting impact on wider communities and environments within which this is undertaken.

In order to support key priorities within the University’s Strategic Framework 2030, and aligned with Government’s R&D People and Culture Strategy, we are:

Developing a positive, inclusive and respectful culture, including:

Enhancing our recognition and reward of people and activities driving excellent research and innovation, including:

  • Cross-institutional award schemes which celebrate some of the most exciting advances in our ground-breaking research programmes every year
  • New approaches to academic career development, including our innovative Birmingham Academic Career Framework that now takes a broader view of excellence in promotions criteria, including new categories for citizenship, and Enterprise, Engagement and Impact
  • Support and recognition for our outstanding Professional Services colleagues, including regular awards against a range of behaviours and ongoing celebration of all those nominated

Widening our institutional training and support to recruit, inspire and develop people from across a global talent pool and diverse backgrounds in their careers in research and innovation, by:

  • Delivering the UK’s first Early Career Researcher Network Hub, in partnership with the British Academy and a consortium of 12 Midlands universities
  • Expanding our targeted leadership development programmes for under-represented groups, through both local initiatives and in cross-sector partnerships, including Aditi, Aurora and MDS SUSTAIN
  • Championing and embedding our Equality Change Programme’s work around recruitment, selection, induction and retention, as well as career development initiatives
  • Supporting our postdoctoral communities to shape their own development programmes through cross-College initiatives such as PERCAT and ECARS
  • Developing dedicated Fellowship and Grant Academy frameworks to support our early and mid-career researchers with hands-on funding and career advice and long-term mentoring
  • Creating outward-facing programmes to inspire future leaders from many walks of life, and to encourage discussion between diverse sectors through our new city-centre based Leadership Institute
  • Implementing the Concordat to Support the Career Development of Researchers, and exploring how our commitment can make a real difference to our own staff and students
  • Supporting our brilliant technical staff, who underpin a wide range of research and innovation across and beyond our campus, through our Technical Academy, including work with Midlands Innovation on the regional TALENT programme

Ensuring that we share and learn from best practice across and beyond the higher education sector, by: