Researcher Development Programme: Enhancing Research Potential


About the Programme

The Researcher Development Programme signals a very different approach to enhancing your research effectiveness. It provides a structured development route for academics and research staff, focusing on the demands and experience of everyday research life. It is designed to promote impactful research and to support your development beyond your disciplinary area.

Who is it for?

Whether you are a Research Associate, a lecturer or more established in your career, this programme recognises the need to engage with you whatever your research experience.

You may be interested if you want to:

• Take your research to the next level. This programme will challenge you to set inspiring goals, and to stick to them.

• Create a new research focus. This programme will enable you to explore options and identify action.

• Discover new ways of thinking about engagement. This programme will encourage reflection on communities relevant to you.

• Develop a more strategic approach to publishing. This programme will re-examine and enhance your own personal profile.

• For all involved, the programme will be an opportunity to expand internal networks, create effective strategies to enhance research performance while managing the other demands of your job.

Programme structure

The programme consists of three elements:

Element 1: Coaching

The programme starts with an interactive and experiential one day workshop followed by group coaching. The workshop focuses on core foundations around your research, including engaging with values, managing the inner critic, finding motivation, focus and confidence. The focus of the coaching is down to the goals you set; writing, grants, managing projects, impact. It provides a structure of challenge and accountability to achieve them.

Element 2: Development events

These run throughout the programme, covering a range of topics, all of which are related to Vitae’s Research Development Framework.

Element 3: Writing retreats

Writing is a huge part of research but what about the experience of writing itself? Learn how you can be more productive, to keep writing and even enjoy the process.


The coaching programme is designed and delivered by Dr. Will Medd. Leaving his Lectureship in 2013 to pursue his professional coaching business, Will was an established researcher and PI, with an international track record of publications and high impact research council projects. Will is passionate about ensuring participants gain personal value from the experience of the programme in ways that lead to taking actions that will make a difference.

A range of internal and external colleagues are involved in contributing to the programme. Key external contacts include Professor Judith Williams, Dr Rachel Cowen and Dr Dee-Ann Johnson, all experienced researcher developers sourced via Vitae.


If you are interested in applying for a place on the programme, please discuss with your PI or Head of Department before completing the short application form and send to The deadline for submitting your application is 9am 20th November 2017.

“The courses and the on-going coaching have created a community-like feel to research - one that surpasses pay grade, discipline etc.”

“Through the coaching, I have a discovered some of my own ‘tricks of the trade’: small habits, insights and new ways of working that help me prioritise and focus.”

Participants from the Researcher Development Programme

Lancaster University
Lancaster University
LancasterLA1 4YW United Kingdom
+44 (0) 1524 65201