Semester One 2012

Doctoral Studies Research Students Forum - 2012 Archive

Page archived at: Mon, 10 December 2012 09:11:52 +1000

Thursday 14 June

Keynote: Policy, evidence and research – a fractious relationship

Professor Anthony Welch

As researchers, we clearly take the notion of evidence seriously - as we should. We expect others to do likewise, including policy makers such as Ministers, senior civil servants and the like.

But this raises at least two issues. Firstly, what counts as evidence? Do we all agree on what constitutes evidence? Quantitative? Qualitative? A mix of the two? If all don’t agree, what to do?

Secondly, policy makers make decisions in settings where evidence is but one of the factors that they take into account, when framing policies (social or educational). The electoral implications may well be another issue they will consider, especially if election time is looming. The likely response by the press/media may well be something else that is also in the mix (as we have seen with the ongoing investigations in the UK into the links between politicians, policy makers, and the press).

So the relationship between these the three elements in the policy triangle, can be quite complex, dynamic, and at times, contested. The paper will attempt to explain how and why this is, why it has changed in recent decades, and what may be done about it.

Click here to download the podcast. (mp3, 58MB)

Special Workshop: Career planning and development for research students

Not sure where you are going with your research degree? What do you need to do to position yourself for a career in academia? What other options exist outside academia? Come to this session to hear about what you can be doing now to focus your career. Think about how to put a good application together, how to enhance your experience in your online applications. What additional skills and attributes has your PhD equipped you with. We will also look at how researchers can connect and collaborate with the right people in order to develop career prospects. Finally, how to interview confidently both within and outside university. This career development session is designed to start you thinking about your next careers steps.

Julie Doherty, the Postgraduate Career Development Officer, conducted a special 50 minute workshop session for Sydney School of Education and Social Work higher degree research students.

Click here to download the Powerpoint presentation from this workshop. (ppt, 3.36MB)


Please contact if you have queries regarding the Research Students Forum.