ESRC Funding for PECANS

Economic and Social Research CouncilCentreLGS PECANS worked with funding from the ESRC's International Training and Networking Opportunities Scheme. Rosie Harding (Keele) and Donatella Alessandrini (Kent) led an exciting programme of activities and network development that ran over two years from October 2009 to 2011.

The CentreLGS PECANS International Workshops and Network Development Programme aimed to:

  • provide opportunities for face to face neworking for early career scholars in law, gender and sexuality (broadly defined)
  • develop the activities of CentreLGS PECANS to provide sustainable training and development activities for early career researchers
  • support international collaboration between early career scholars in law, gender and sexuality
  • to encourage development of key skills for early career scholars in managing networks and organising activites
  • sustain international links through virtual networking technologies

The scheme included two international workshops, visiting fellowships for international early career researchers, the development of a new PECANS website with enhanced virtual networking capabilities, and the creation of a PECANS management committee structure.

Sameena Dalwai and Ana PorrocheThe international workshops provided short-term, flexible opportunities for UK postgraduate students and early career academics to network with researchers from elsewhere in the world, in the context of a combined event with conference presentations and practical training and development sessions. The visiting fellowships buit on this networking activity to strengthen relationships between UK and international scholars and the increase potential for sustainable international research collaboration amongst career young scholars working in the law, gender and sexuality field. Over the two years of the ESRC funding, 14 early career academics were supported to visit Keele and Kent Universities.

The networks developed and strengthened through the international workshops and visiting fellowships will be sustained and supported through the re-developed PECANS website. This virtual space will include a protected, members-only, interactive space where postgraduate research students and early career scholars can communicate research ideas, share their work, gain comments and feedback, and work together on collaborative research proposals. In addition to this interactive facility, the website will also include a re-developed version of the PECANS directory, a searchable directory of LGS doctoral research projects and the PECANS 'Find a Supervisor' tool, a database of potential supervisors with interests in the LGS field. Where resources are developed as part of the workshop training activities (e.g. presentations, documents, video clips etc) these will be uploaded to the website to be made available to all interested early career scholars.

All of these activities will be sustained through a management committee structure, drawing on both postgraduate research students and post-doctoral scholars. The committee will include at least two research students and two early career scholars, who will each have responsibility for an area of the work of PECANS. This structure will allow for the development of professional skills for early career researcher by involving them in the organisation of PECANS as well as the delivery of the workshops, visiting fellowships and website.

For more informationon PECANS, please contact Arturo Sánchez García.