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Early career researchers

ecr group lunch

The Early Career Research Forum was formed in 2017 to support and represent early career researchers in the School of Earth and Environmental Sciences. A key focus is career development and networking, but other duties of the forum are to represent the interests of early career researchers by developing policies and providing a voice at School and University level meetings. Social events are also organised, for example, to welcome new early career researchers to the School and to mark the departure of those leaving to exciting new opportunities.

Committee members: 

Chair: Dr Matthew Warke
SecretaryDr Thomas Lamont
Postdoc/ECR Representative: Dr Nivea Magalhaes
Mentoring Coordinator: Dr Arola Moreras Marti
Social Coordinator: Dr Maria Cristina Castillo Alvarez
Training Coordinator: Dr Anna Mackie

Former committee members:

Chairs: Dr Rhian Rees-Owen, Dr Eleanor Mare
Secretary/Treasurers: Dr Rosanna Greenop, Dr Mark Fox-Powell
Postdoc Representative: Dr Elyse Allender
Social Coordinators: Dr Mark Fox-Powell, Dr Anouk Borst
Training Coordinators: Dr Matthew Warke
School Seminar Coordinators: Dr David Evans, Dr Fernando Gazquez Sanchez, Dr Mark Fox-Powell, Dr Matthew Warke

Previous early career researchers in the School have gone on to a variety of academic and non-academic roles. This forum supports and encourages all early career researchers to realise their own career ambitions. Examples of workshops that have been successfully run are as follows: 

How fellowship proposals are reviewed

This workshop was led by Dr Sami Mikhail and focused on illuminating the process by which applications are evaluated by external referees.

Forum discussing the process of publishing in nature journals

This workshop was led by Dr Alicia Newton, Senior Editor at Nature Geoscience. Through a short presentation and a more extensive Q and A session, Alicia outlined the scope of Nature Geoscience, what the submission, revision, and acceptance procedure entails, and discussed pursuing a career in publishing.

How grant applications are reviewed

This workshop was led by Dr Sami Mikhail. In a similar format to the fellowship workshop, this workshop explored the mechanisms by which standard grant applications are reviewed.

Writing fellowship applications

This workshop was led by Dr Claire Cousins who discussed how to plan, construct, and write a successful fellowship application. Another workshop on funding applications was run by Dr Prabs Dehal from the University's Business and Research Development office.

Postdocs on retreat

ECR members on riverwalk

The group travelled on a residential trip to the Burn, just north of Fife. The purpose of the trip was to take part in some team-building exercises, reflect on the programme so far, and present short (five-minute) pitches of potential research projects to base a fellowship on.  


This workshop was led by Professor Richard White who used his experience as a journal editor to guide the group through the process of peer review from an editorial perspective.

The forum is grateful to have received financial support for these events from both the School of Earth and Environmental Sciences and the Centre for Academic, Professional and Organisational Development (CAPOD - now CEED and OSDS).