The Concordat and Action Plan

LSE recognises the importance of personal and career development for research staff at all stages of their career...

LSE recognises the importance of personal and career development for research staff at all stages of their career. Through a number of concrete mechanisms, such as Career Development Reviews, we support and encourage researchers to pro-actively engage in their personal, career and lifelong development.

You will find below some links to a range of key information in relation to the Concordat.

Please note that this information will be updated in the coming weeks to reflect the revised Concordat which is available here.

The Concordat to Support the Career Development of Researchers

What is the Concordat?

The Concordat to Support the Career Development of Researchers sets out the expectations and responsibilities of researchers, their managers, employers and funders in managing the career development of the researcher.  The aim is to increase the attractiveness and sustainability of research careers in the UK and to improve the quantity, quality and impact of research for the benefit of UK society and the economy.

Further information on the 2008 Concordat is available here. The new Concordat (revised in September 2019) is available here.

What is the LSE doing about it?

The LSE has been monitoring the development of the Concordat 2008, which was recently revised in September 2019.  The School has been taking a proactive approach in ensuring that policies and practices in relation to research staff are closely aligned with the key principles.  A statement from the School's Director, Dame Minouche Shafik is also available here.

Implementation is being led by the Research and Policy Staff Committee, with consultations taking place with colleagues and other groups and Committees across the School.  Consultations have identified that the support provisions provided across the School for research staff are closely aligned with the Concordat, however there are some areas where improvements can be made.  To address those areas, the Committee has developed a Concordat Action Plan, further information below.

In September 2019, we have also received the revised Concordat following the 10 year review and will be updating and modifying our Action Plan further to reflect the changes.

A message from the VCAC

The Research and Policy Staff Committee (RPSC) has formal oversight within the School for implementation of the Concordat to Support the Career Development of Researchers.

The membership is made up of various stakeholders from the School, including Research Staff, Principal Investigators, Vice-Chair of Appointments Committee (VCAC), Pro-Directors, Heads of Department, Research Centre Directors, Heads of Administrative Divisions (Human Resources, the Teaching and Learning Centre and Research Division), the Chair of the Research Staff Association and a research staff representative from the University and College Union (UCU).  Full membership is available here

Reviewing actions

The Committee  has taken the Concordat Action Plan as its core plan of work for Committee business and receives regular updates from each lead at Committee meetings.  An external review conducted by Vitae takes place every two years to assess the progress of actions.  The School’s previous Action Plans and reports are also available below.

I do hope that you will join me in ensuring that good practice is adopted across the School, in line with the Concordat’s recommendations.

Professor Charles Stafford

Vice-Chair of Appointments Committee (VCAC)

Chair of Research Staff Committee

Concordat Action Plan and Reports

The RSC is leading in conducting an analysis of LSE support provisions for research staff in the following phases:

  • April 2010 - Completion of HEI survey: Strategies for implementing the Concordat
  • September 2010 - Identifying LSE progress in implementing the Concordat (Gap Analysis)
  • October 2010 - LSE Action Plan to address areas emerging from the Concordat Gap Analysis. The 2010 Action Plan is available here.
  • October - December 2012 - Internal review to assess progress of actions. The 2012 report is available here. The revised 2012-14 Action Plan is available here.
  • July 2015 - Four year review by Vitae/European Commission.  The 2015 report is available here. The revised 2015-17 Action Plan is available here.
  • April 2017 - Internal review to assess progress of actions. The 2017 report is available here. The revised 2017-19 Action Plan is available here.
  • February 2019 - Four year review documents include the Concordat Action Plan 2019-20 and the LSE Concordat Action Plan Progress Report 2018. The documents were further updated and available here: Concordat Action Plan 2019-21 and LSE Concordat Action Plan Progress Report 2019

Our current review documents are available below:

HR Excellence in Research

The School has been awarded the 'HR excellence in research' logo from the European Commission.

About the award

A UK-wide process enables UK HEIs to gain the European Commission's 'HR excellence in research' badge, which acknowledges their alignment with the principles of the European Charter for Researchers and Code of Conduct for their Recruitment.

The UK process incorporates both the QAA Code of Practice for Research Degree Programmes and the Concordat to Support the Career Development of Researchers to enable institutions that have published Concordat implementation plans to gain the 'HR excellence in research' badge. The UK approach includes ongoing national evaluation and benchmarking.  This system of accreditation was designed by the European Commission to provide researchers across Europe with a clear way of identifying those employers which are committed to creating a favourable working environment for researchers.

What the Award means for LSE

The LSE has been recognised by the European Commission for its efforts in improving the working conditions and career development opportunities for its researchers and for providing a clear plan of action for future developments. 2010 was the first year that the award had been made in the UK, and the LSE was one of only a few UK higher education institutions to have received it..

"As a leading research university, the LSE is delighted to have received an HR Excellence in Research Badge. This award is a welcome recognition of the School's commitment to observing best practice for the career development of its research staff. The School looks forward to building on this achievement in the years ahead." - (London School of Economics 15 December 2010)

In a statement from Vitae announced on 14 February 2013, the School was listed as one of 12 institutions who were successful in retaining the ‘HR Excellence in Research’ badging.  In a further announcement on 13 July 2015, the School was noted as being successful once again in retaining the award.

Professor David Stevenson, LSE Vice Chair of the Appointments Committee (VCAC) and Chair of the Research Staff Committee (RSC) at the time of LSE first being given the award stated:

"The LSE has done a great deal of work to clarify and improve the conditions of employment of its research staff. I was delighted to see these efforts acknowledged through the HR Excellence in Research badging, and it is extremely encouraging news that this badging has been retained."