PAT SAP Research Technical Professional (RTP) Subgroup members

Closing date
13 October 2023, 11:59pm UK time
Number of positions
15
Length of term
One year minimum and up to three years
Time commitment
Approximately four days per year
Remuneration
£170 per meeting plus travel and subsistence cover where required. Caring costs incurred due to attending subgroup meetings can be expensed
Interview date
Not applicable
Outcomes communicated
To be decided

The Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC) would like to invite members of the bioscience technical community to join our People and Talent Strategy Advisory Panel (PAT SAP) RTP Subgroup.

The RTP Subgroup is being developed to:

  • focus on issues related to the careers and development of technical staff working within the biosciences
  • help shape BBSRC strategy for supporting these individuals

Who we’re looking for

Eligibility

For the purpose of this group, we consider RTPs as: an individual with specialist knowledge in one or more research techniques or methods employed specifically to contribute their expertise to multiple research projects.

For this role, BBSRC considers RTPs across all disciplines, provided they support and underpin bioscience. This may include, but is not limited to:

  • technical professional staff
  • individuals staffing core facilities
  • data scientists
  • data engineers
  • archivists
  • informaticians
  • statisticians
  • software developers
  • audiovisual technologists

Members based in academia should be working on one or more of the following:

  • a BBSRC-funded grant
  • working at, or in collaboration with, a BBSRC-funded strategic institute
  • undertaking research within the BBSRC portfolio at the time of application to the subgroup

Members working in industry should be working for a company with which BBSRC has an established relationship, or a company with intent to develop a collaborative partnership with BBSRC.

All members should have experience of a working relationship with BBSRC or a research council including Innovate UK and Research England, in the role of either an employer, a partner organisation, or a funder.

Experience

Across the subgroup as a whole, we aim to include the following experiences of members:

  • working as a BBSRC-funded RTP in an academic environment
  • working in an industrial environment
  • working in a business, enterprise, or innovation environment
  • engaging with both researchers and the wider scientific community (for example, policymakers, funders, science communicators, those supporting innovation etc.)
  • RTPs supporting and underpinning scientific topics across the breadth of BBSRC’s portfolio

We will ensure equality and diversity in the group including diversity of individuals through career, demography, and location alongside diversity of thought. We aim to have a representative group of the biological sciences sector, and aim to work proactively to ensure representation and inclusivity of opportunity.

Person criteria

The desired attributes of members sought are:

  • personal effectiveness, where the individual:
    • is empowered to use their own initiative and empowers others to do the same
    • plans effectively and realistically
    • keeps to commitments made, such as attending quarterly meetings and responding to papers in preparation for the meeting, and explaining when they cannot be met
    • prioritises well, balancing importance and urgency to deliver what is required on time
    • has genuine interest in effecting change and influencing BBSRC strategy
  • communication, where the individual:
    • communicates effectively and flexibly, varying style for audience, setting and level in the organisation
    • is able to persuade and influence audiences at varying levels of seniority
    • seeks and respects other people’s opinions and perspectives, is open to suggestions
    • deals assertively and fairly with disagreement, conflict and challenge
    • is receptive and open to feedback
    • puts across difficult concepts simply, concisely and clearly
  • working with others (collaborating and partnering), where the individual:
    • is able to build networks with stakeholders from a range of sectors
    • is able to work effectively, confidently and diplomatically with a diverse range of stakeholders
    • promotes collaboration and cross-functional working
    • holds equality, diversity and inclusion at the core of discussions and decisions that they share

Please note that it is not expected that all of the experiences and attributes sought will be found in each member, particularly where individuals are early in their career. Therefore, having gaps in the criteria may not adversely affect your application, and we strongly encourage such individuals to apply.

We would also like you to highlight any knowledge of the Technician Commitment and if you have any experiences associated with Technician Commitment activities, such as:

  • improving research culture for technicians
  • career development or skills development for technicians etc.

Career breaks and flexible working

We welcome applications from RTPs of all career stages and career pathways. Time spent outside the active research and business environment, whether through career breaks or flexible working, will not adversely affect your application and such individuals are therefore encouraged to apply. You can indicate any substantive periods of absence within your application if you wish.

What you’ll be doing

The group’s remit will focus on issues related to technicians in the bioscience community, especially on BBSRC’s actions relevant to the Technician Commitment. Initially, this could include:

  • consultation on how BBSRC will contribute to the objectives set out in UK Research and Innovation’s people and teams action plan, particularly those pertinent to the Technician Commitment
  • considering BBSRC’s actions following our survey of research organisation’s mechanisms to support career development and recognition of researchers and RTPs
  • producing and effectively communicating case studies of bioscience RTPs
  • encouraging and supporting RTPs into appropriate BBSRC funding programmes as project leads
  • encouraging and supporting RTPs into BBSRC’s peer review process

Membership

Membership is expected to last for one year minimum. At BBSRC’s discretion, this can be extended up to a maximum of three years by offering six-month rolling extensions.

The subgroup aims to have approximately 15 members and will ideally consist of:

  • chair
  • RTPs based in academia (including universities and institutes)
  • RTPs based in industry
  • RTPs with enterprise experience

Travel expenses

For in-person meetings, reasonable travel expenses to these meetings can be reimbursed. This reimbursement can also cover any care arrangements for dependants which you may require to be able to travel.

Attendance fees

In return for your time investment and professional commitment to RTP subgroup business, BBSRC can offer payments of £170 for each meeting attended (a minimum of one hour attendance duration is required to qualify for the payment).

Time commitment

We estimate the time commitment to be four days per year. Meetings will be held on the basis of need and will typically be four hours in duration. Meeting dates will be confirmed a minimum of five weeks prior.

How to apply

To apply please complete the application form and return to emily.finnegan@bbsrc.ukri.org

The deadline for applications is 13 October 2023, 11:59pm UK time.

Before you apply, we recommend that you:

If you have any queries regarding the subgroup or application, please contact us via email: emily.finnegan@bbsrc.ukri.org

How we’ll assess your application

Applications to the subgroup will be initially sifted by BBSRC staff, including the Head of Research and Innovation Talent at BBSRC. The applications will then be assessed by the Chair of PAT SAP and the Director of Talent, Inclusion and Funding Delivery at BBSRC.

You will be assessed against the criteria and relevant experience sought in members, as described in the person criteria in the ‘Who we’re looking for’ section.

Appointments will be offered based on:

  • the assessment against the person criteria and relevant experience
  • the need to balance the overall expertise of the subgroup
  • the need to maintain a diversity of institutions represented
  • the need to ensure appointments to the subgroup are in line with UK Research and Innovation’s equality, diversity and inclusion policy

Further information

Background

The UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) BBSRC SAPs play a key role in helping to shape our research and innovation portfolios. SAPs consist of experts and stakeholders from across the biosciences research base, private sector businesses, learned societies, and wider society.

The PAT SAP has been developed to focus on issues related to the careers and development of staff working within the biosciences, and to help shape BBSRC strategy for supporting these individuals.

In addition to this panel, BBSRC has established a Researcher Subgroup of PAT SAP, to focus specifically on addressing the experiences of early career researchers. BBSRC also recognises the need to support RTPs within the sector, and as a result BBSRC is establishing a PAT SAP RTP Subgroup.

Equality and diversity

We recognise that diverse ideas, experiences, backgrounds and perspectives are fundamental to successful science and innovation. We are committed to ensuring that our committees, panels and boards are inclusive, diverse, and representative of the research community.

We are committed to the principle of providing equal opportunities for all. We are keen to obtain more diversity in our appointments, so would welcome applications from a range of candidates from all backgrounds. We especially welcome applications from:

  • women
  • those with a disability
  • those that identify as being members of an ethnic minority group
  • those working in industry or at a BBSRC strategically funded institute

An equality impact assessment has been developed to inform applicants and members of how we consider and minimise barriers to participation through reasonable adjustments. If you feel further reasonable adjustments could be made to support you in your application or potential membership, please do not hesitate to contact the office (email: emily.finnegan@bbsrc.ukri.org).

We ask that you provide diversity information that will be used anonymously by BBSRC for statistical purposes. This will support us in assessing how effective our policies and procedures are in eliminating unlawful discrimination and promoting opportunities. This information will be treated in confidence by BBSRC and will not be used in the assessment of applications.

Last updated: 14 September 2023

This is the website for UKRI: our seven research councils, Research England and Innovate UK. Let us know if you have some quick feedback or help us improve your experience by taking three minutes to tell us what you think of the UKRI website.