Jessica Vermeer
19 November 2019

The Flemish minister of Education, Hilde Crevits, is assigning 2 million euros of additional subsidy to five Flemish universities to improve the progression of young researchers to the job market. In addition, the Fund for Scientific Research Flanders (FWO) will provide specific measures to enable these researchers to do for example an internship at a company next to their research.

About 9 out of 10 PhD students will have a career outside university. These researchers should be well prepared. The additional subsidy will be used to organize and increase mobility, both internationally, between research fields and between academics and the business sector. Since the mental health of PhD students is under pressure, the action plan also attends to well-being and stress prevention.

With the subsidies, a framework will be created for development, execution and strengthening of activities that support young researchers. This can include extra education programs, training and coaching.

Hilde Crevits
Credit: Paul Van Welden, CC-BY-SA 4.0

FWO aims to create several possibilities to enable a smooth transition to industry. PhDs can do their research in collaboration with a company, they can do an internship, they’ll have the opportunity to perform paid activities outside of university and they will be able to accept a research scholarship within a company.

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Hilde Crevits: “To stay competitive, Flanders is investing in young researchers. They contribute to qualitative and innovative research. With all these arrangements, we hope to increase the chances of our young researchers and strengthen innovation within our society.”