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Career prospects for young researchers in the spotlight at National Hellenic Research Foundation

Experienced researchers from different scientific disciplines presented research prospects and opportunities, emphasizing on the benefit of networking for researchers worldwide.


An original discussion, ‘Career talks’, held on 28th November by the National Hellenic Research Foundation (NHRF) and the National Documentation Centre (EKT), presented prospects and career opportunities in research as part of the ERA-Mobilcar.GR –HORIZON 2020 project and the ‘Knowledge and Partnership Bridges’ initiative.

Experienced researchers from different scientific disciplines unraveled research prospects and opportunities, emphasizing on the benefits of networking for researchers worldwide as well as  the opportunities that may arise from different mobility programmes.

The first speaker, Dr. Nektarios Nasikas, a physicist specialising in the physical chemistry of materials and Director of the Hellenic Foundation for Research and Innovation (HFRI), referred to his first steps as a young researcher, his return to Greece from abroad, the difficulties he faced. He pointed out the unfolding opportunities for young researchers in Greece, explaining the ways HFRI supports research in Greece today, stressed the importance of ‘capacity building’ and the need to support young scientists so that Greece could become internationally competitive in research.

The next speaker, Dr Kalliopi Dasyra, an astrophysicist, post-doctoral researcher at the National Observatory of Athens and winner of the L’Oreal-UNESCO for Women in Science 2016, talked about her own career as a young researcher, her return to Greece, her commitment on goals and finally the recognition in the field of science.

Dr Panayiotis Zoumpoulakis, researcher in the Institute of Biology, Medicinal Chemistry & Biotechnology of National Hellenic Research Foundation, Head of Liaisons of the Multiinstitutional MSc in Bioentrepreneurship, linking  biotechnology R&D and enterprises, addressed an issue of major concern not only for many young researchers but also for Greece as a whole, namely how to combine research and laboratory science with entrepreneurship, ultimately strengthening domestic output.

Dr Maria Kaliampou, Senior Lecturer in Modern Greek Language of Yale University, joined the discussion via Skype call and was the only researcher in the panel who has not permanently returned to Greece. However, thanks to her work abroad, she acts as an ambassador for Greek science in the USA. She told the audience about her own career in research and explained how the Erasmus mobility programme gave impetus to her international career. She mentioned the particular characteristics of the Social Sciences and Humanities, and how to combine research in these fields with the market.

Last to speak was Dr Ioannis Baziotis, Professor in Agricultural University of Athens and the first Greek to participate in the NASA mission in search of meteorites in Antarctica in November 2017. He stressed the importance of a young researcher following his or her dream. He referred to the many obstacles he met, the importance of inspiration for young researchers and the significance of commitment to goals, saying, ‘Science is a lifestyle’ - a specific set of values for individual researchers.

The discussion was co-ordinated by Dr Vasilis Gregoriou, Director and Chairman of the NHRF Board. In closing the discussion he pointed out the remarkable research and scientific potential of the country, which is equal to that of other countries.

The event was jointly organised by the National Documentation Centre and the initiative ‘Knowledge and Partnership Bridges’. The latter aims to link and create networks for Greek scientists, entrepreneurs and professionals, whether they have left Greece or remainedin the country, documents the results of the mobility of human resources in today’s socio-economic conditions, understand the needs of different communities and promote opportunities for collaboration and networking.

The two-day event ‘Career Talks for Young Researchers 2018, organised by NHRF on 27- 28 November 2018, to support young researchers in particular in finding opportunities for a successful career in research. was held as part of the ‘ERA Mobility and Researchers Career Days in Greece: A contribution to decrease brain drain (ERA-MobilCar.GR -HORIZON 2020)’ project, which encourages the mobility of young researchers and aims to highlight professional opportunities for highly qualified young scientists in the wider field of research.

Watch the video of the event (only in Greek).


Tags: CareerTalks, ERA-Mobilcar.GR, NHRF