Anglia Ruskin University
Hoskins Moreau Mc Hugh 2023 From PhD to ECR Access journal.pdf (334.15 kB)

From PhD to ECR: Supervisory relationships, precarity and the temporal regimes of academia

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journal contribution
posted on 2023-09-13, 14:47 authored by Kate Hoskins, Marie-Pierre Moreau

The expansion of higher education in the United Kingdom (UK), the multiplication of doctoral routes  and  the  increased  precarity  of  academic  jobs  (Leathwood &Read  2020)  have  been associated  with  more  uncertainties  regarding  the  transition  taken  to  a  permanent  academic position  (Le  Feuvre  2015).  This  paper  seeks  to  examine  and  problematise  the  structures  and practices recent PhD graduates from UK universities face as they navigate the transition to their first  post-PhD  position  in  higher  education  contexts  characterised  by  temporal  regimes  which regulate  access  to  an  academic  position.  The  data  informing  this  paper  are  derived  from  our projectstudying the transition from PhD to academic position (Precarious transitions? Doctoral students negotiating  the shift  to academic positions, funded by British Academy-Leverhulme, 2020–2022). Particular attention is drawn to the role of supervisors as gatekeepers, able to give and withdraw opportunities to their doctoral students with significant consequences for career prospects. The concepts of mentorship and sponsorship are used to make sense of the different support  received  by  doctoral  students.  We  argue  that  practices of  mentoring  and,  to  an  even greater extent, sponsoring, ease the transition from doctoral research to early career academics, with patterns of supervisory support legitimised through the mobilisation of narratives such as elective affinities or talent spotting.



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Access: Critical explorations of equity in higher education


United Kingdom

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