skip to content

Postdoc Academy



One way or another, 2020 hasn't been the best year for most people. So here at the Postdoc Academy, we want to make sure that we show our postdocs a little extra love during Postdoc Appreciation Week 2020.

Between Monday 21st and Friday 25th September, we'll be putting on a wide range of virtual activities that celebrate the diverse postdoc community at Cambridge, showcase the fantastic research that you work on, and recognise the huge contributions that you make to the life and culture of our university.

Take a look at the programme for the week and find out how you can get involved!


Monday - Community

Meet the Postdocs!

Postdocs make up the biggest and most diverse staff grouping in the University. We want to showcase who you are, the research you conduct, and the amazing talents that you bring to Cambridge.

So we'll be featuring a series of postdoc profiles on our website and on Twitter. We want these to be as diverse and representative of the community as possible - so a huge thank you to all the postdocs who have got involved and told us a bit about themselves!

Keep an eye on the Postdoc Academy twitter feed throughout this week to meet some of the 4,000 postdocs who make up the Cambridge community.


PdOC Big Virtual Lunch: 12:30

The Postdocs of Cambridge Society will be hosting a big virtual lunch for the postdoc community. Join your fellow postdocs for a sociable lunch break.

Sign-up here for the Zoom details.



Tuesday - Research Culture

Research Culture at Cambridge podcast

Listen to Liz Simmonds discuss research culture with some special guests in a newly recorded podcast that is hot off the press on Tuesday 22nd September!



Postdocs' Wellbeing Event - Failure Stories by Academics: 12:30-1:30pm

If you want to hear about your colleagues’experiences and to have a chance to share your own stories, please join this wellbeing session.

  • What does ‘failure’ mean to you? 
  • How do you cope with the failures? 
  • What is this ‘shadow CV’ and what is the benefit of keeping it?
  • Do you share your failure stories with anyone?

Marta Costa and Deepak Venkateshvaran will be sharing their own failure stories and coping strategies as academics.

Please register here to attend this online event.



Wednesday - Researcher Development

Mid-Contract Check-In: 10-11:30am

This event is open to you if you are at the mid-point of your postdoc contract at Cambridge.

The aim is to help you to position yourself for the next stage of your career (in academia or otherwise) at a key point in your postdoc journey by reflecting on your professional development activities so far and giving you some guidance and tools to support you in reaching your future career goals.

The event will be facilitated by members of the Postdoc Academy, the Postdoc RD Team and Careers Service. You will also meet staff members from other University services who offer resources for postdocs. At the end of the session, you will have a set of actions to help guide you in your next steps.

Register here to confirm your place.



Thursday - Postdocs in Research

Postdoc Research Communications Competition

What is the one question you would love someone to ask you about your research?

To celebrate all the amazing research that postdocs are involved in at the university, we’re hosting a friendly research communication competition!

If you've never done research communication or public engagement before, this is a fantastic opportunity to try your hand in a really friendly, supportive environment. If you've done lots before, this is great chance to think innovatively about new ways to communicate your work in a virtual world.

To enter:

  • Submit a video between 20s and 2mins long - filmed on your phone or laptop, we’re not expecting you to be a master filmmaker.
  • Answering: the one question you’d love someone to ask you about your research.
  • No powerpoint slides are allowed, but otherwise let your imagination run wild!
  • You could use an object that in some way represents your research. You could film yourself sketching, or even make a stop-motion video!

All entries must be submitted by midnight on Thursday 17th September.

*Please note you must be a postdoc at the University of Cambridge (including Colleges and Partner Institutions) to enter*

The winning videos will be posted on Twitter on Thursday 24th September!



Friday - Reward & Recognition

IfM Postdoctoral Awards

On Friday 25th September, the winners of the Institute for Manufacturing's Postdoc Awards will be announced by Professor Tim Minshall.

These awards recognise postdocs at the IfM who demonstrate excellence in research, teaching, or academic citizenship.