Eurodoc Open Science Ambassador Training

Diversity and Inclusion: Eurodoc’s commitment for ECRs with disabilities

Eurodoc works to improve the conditions of Early Career Researchers (ECRs), a collective name under which Eurodoc considers doctoral candidates and postdoctoral researchers. As part of its annual strategic goals, Eurodoc has chosen to focus on the topic of Equality and advocate the promotion of equal opportunities for all ECRs wishing to pursue a career in research.

Therefore, on the 3rd of December 2019, Eurodoc joined the International Day of Disabled Persons with an explicit commitment to help build a more inclusive working environment for all ECRs , irrespective of whether they have some kind of disability.

As Eurodoc, we believe that every person should have the right to take the professional path they choose. Moreover, we think that diversity is an asset that enriches the whole community by providing different sets of experiences and new perspectives.

The importance of making our working environments more inclusive

Firstly, the European Union recognizes as a basic right the full inclusion of every person in cultural, social and economic life. We believe that it is important to acknowledge that disability influences individuals’ working experience. Enabling access to equal opportunities in workplaces by building more inclusive environments is a key element for achieving sustainable development, as it promotes accessibility, autonomy and human dignity.
Secondly, ECRs work in various establishments, including universities, research institutions, companies and public administrations. For this reason, addressing this matter from an ECRs’ perspective can have a positive effect for differently able persons that work in these workplaces.

The Eurodoc commitment on Inclusion

As Eurodoc, the first step we are taking is to empower disabled ECRs and strengthen their voice. By joining the Eurodoc Equality Working Group, people can share their own experiences, express their needs, and develop proposals and recommendations for improving the research working environment.

The second step is to raise awareness about the need for inclusion of differently able ECRs. Understanding and empathising with individuals that experience exclusion because of disability is a vital step in mobilising whole communities towards change.
To do this, we are going to launch a social media campaign, #Eurodoc4Inclusion. On the 3rd day of the month, every two months, we will publish a brief article on different aspects of disability and share best practices.

As a result of greater awareness of the issue, we hope to attract many more ECRs from different backgrounds to join the Working Group to help our efforts towards Inclusion.

The #Eurodoc4DisabilityInclusion is the first part of a wider campaign, #Eurodoc4Equality, that focuses on different issues that cause inequality and exclusion. Disability is just one source of inequality, and disabled persons can be exposed to intersectional vulnerability, suffering exclusion due to other factors such as gender, ethnicity, religion and cultural issues.

Are you an ECR and do you want to be involved in the activities of Eurodoc Equality Working Group? Send an email to equality [at] eurodoc.net!

Sara Pilia

Eurodococ Equality Working Group Coordinator