HRS4R Action Plan 2014-2017

PRIO’s Action Plan for the implementation of the European Charter and Code for Researchers focuses on four main areas:

This page addresses each of these four main areas, and:

  • Presents a brief overview of the relevant principles from the Charter and Code
  • Provides an overview of the Institute’s main priorities in this area
  • Identifies actions points aimed at promoting the implementation of the principles at PRIO, including any concrete strategy implementation tasks, for which activities, responsibilities and timelines have been identified

I Ethical and Professional Aspects

Public seminar at PRIO
Public seminar at PRIO

In this section we will present PRIO’s action plan for the promotion of the ethical and professional aspects of the Charter and Code.

Charter and Code Principles

The Charter and Code principles relating to ethical and professional aspects state the responsibility of researchers to:

  • Focus their research for the good of mankind.
  • Make every effort to ensure research is relevant to society and does not duplicate research previously carried out elsewhere.
  • Ensure that the results of their research are disseminated, exploited and communicated.
  • Ensure their activities are known to society in such a way they can be understood by non-specialists, thereby improving the public’s understanding of science.
  • Be familiar with the strategic goals governing the research environment and funding mechanisms.
  • Adhere to laws, regulations, standards and institutional Codes of Ethics appropriate to their discipline.
  • Be familiar with intellectual property rights regulations.
  • Be aware of regulations governing their working conditions.
  • Deliver required results as set out in the contractual terms and conditions.
  • Be aware that they are accountable towards their employers, funders, as well as, on more ethical grounds, towards the society as a whole.
  • To adopt safe working practices.

Furthermore the principles relating to ethical and professional aspects state the responsibility of employers and funders to:

  • Not discriminate against researchers in any way.
  • Introduce appraisal systems for researchers for assessing their professional performance.

The Institute’s Priorities

PRIO’s purpose is to conduct research for a more peaceful world.

PRIO is committed to pursuing excellence in research communication with its audiences, including the academic community, stakeholders and the general public. It is an objective to pursue integrated research communication for projects by fostering organisational culture, conceptualizing connections, and providing tools. Furthermore, it is an ambition to cultivate the dialogue between researchers and the wider public.

PRIO is committed to pursue the highest standards in academic publishing. This ambition is emphasised in the PRIO Strategy 2014-2017. It is an objective to maximize the reach of relevant audiences and to enable researchers to increase their publication output.

PRIO cultivates a culture with high ethical awareness.

Action Plan

To achieve these prioritised objectives, the following set of specific activities has been initiated:

Action point Person Responsible Timeline
Develop a communication toolkit, incl. a set of best practice examples Communication Director 2014-201
Provide media training for researchers Communication Director Annually
Academic writing courses for researchers Special Advisor on Project Development and Publications 2014-2017
Writing retreats (3-7 days, twice a year) for researchers Special Advisor on Project Development and Publications 2014-2016
Individual guidance and follow-up of researchers in terms of academic writing and publishing Special Advisor on Project Development and Publications 2014-2017
Monthly writing workshops for researchers Special Advisor on Project Development and Publications 2014-2016
Promote PRIO’s Ethical guidelines for external funding and funders’ Director 2014-2016
Adopt the amendments in Act on Ethics and Integrity in Research Director 2017

II Recruitment

In this section we will present PRIO’s action plan for the promotion of the recruitment aspects of the Charter and Code.

Charter and Code Principles

The Charter and Code principles relating to recruitment state the responsibility of employers and funders to:

  • Establish open, transparent and merit-based recruitment procedures.
  • Clearly specify the entry and admission standards for researchers.
  • Provide explicit guidelines for the recruitment of postdoctoral researchers.
  • Ensure that the qualification criteria are in line with the needs of the position.
  • Provide appropriate evaluation of academic and professional qualifications.
  • Take into consideration the whole range of experiences of the candidates.
  • Not penalise career breaks or variations of the chronological order of CVs.
  • Recognise mobility experience.
  • Ensure that selection committees bring together diverse competences.
  • Inform candidates about the recruitment process and selection criteria.

The Institute’s Priorities

The Institute is already an attractive international employer, with top competence in its areas of research, a dynamic work environment, English as its working language, attractive premises and competitive compensation packages. It is our ambition that the institute shall remain an attractive employer for some of the best, most innovative, most productive and most influential people in peace research.

PRIO keeps a commitment to open calls. The advertising strategy for researcher positions is tailored to the type of position advertised, and includes national and international announcements.

The competence requirements for researcher positions are stated in the vacancy announcements. In the search for new talent, PRIO emphasises academic excellence, as well as initiative and entrepreneurship. The candidate’s academic competence is evaluated by an external academic evaluation committee.

Promotion criteria for Senior Researcher and Research Professor positions at PRIO have been developed. The academic competence of a researcher applying for a personal promotion is evaluated by an external committee.

PRIO aims to achieve a sound balance between junior and senior researchers. As a response to increased demand for PRIO’s competence, the institute is taking measures to attract new junior staff.

In the pursuit of PRIO’s vision and strategic goals, the Institute is dependent on the diverse and complementary competence of the staff. This is reflected in the competence requirements for researcher positions at PRIO, which in addition to academic excellence, also emphasises competence in project development, leadership and research communications. One of PRIO’s main ambitions is to further enhance excellence in its research communications, and the Institute emphasises communication skills in the hiring of researchers.

PRIO is an independent foundation, international in its orientation, with an extensive network of collaborators worldwide. PRIO recognises the importance of researcher mobility, and it is an objective to expand the Institute’s international networks.

Action Plan

To achieve these prioritised objectives, the following set of specific activities has been initiated:

Action point Person Responsible Timeline
Develop a policy for hosting Trainees at PRIO Administrative Director 2016
Update PRIO’s policy for hosting Master students and the provision of MA-scholarships Administrative Director 2016
Give weight to communication skills in the recruitment of researchers Administrative Director 2014-2017
Implement and moderately expand the PRIO Global Fellows Program Director 2014-2017

III Working Conditions and Social Security

Part of PRIO's team for Holmenkollstafetten
Part of PRIO's team for Holmenkollstafetten

In this section we will present PRIO’s action plan for the promotion of the working conditions and social security aspects of the Charter and Code.

Charter and Code Principles

The Charter and Code emphasise good working conditions for all researchers. Institutions should have supportive environment with a well-organised research-career infrastructure and provide family-friendly working conditions, also for researchers with disabilities. Funders should ensure that adequate resources are provided in support of the agreed work programme. To safeguard a gender balance among researchers, an equal opportunity policy should be carried out.

The Charter and Code principles relating to working conditions and social security, state the responsibility of employers and funders to:

  • Recognise researchers as professionals.
  • Ensure the most stimulating research environment.
  • Ensure working conditions deemed essential for successful research performance.
  • Improve stability of employment conditions for researchers.
  • Ensure researchers enjoy fair and attractive salaries and equitable social security provisions.
  • Aim for representative gender balance among researchers.
  • Draw up a career development strategy for researchers.
  • Recognise the value of mobility for researchers.
  • Offer career advice for researchers.
  • Specify what intellectual property rights belong to the researchers and to the employer, and possibly other collaborating parties.
  • View co-authorship positively.
  • Value teaching options within researchers’ career paths.
  • Establish proper procedure for addressing complaints.
  • Recognise the legitimacy of researchers’ participation in decision-making bodies.

The Institute’s Priorities

PRIO prioritises the wellbeing of its staff. The value of working in an environment with a high level of professionalism is appreciated in itself. The Institute works continuously and actively to live up to being a competitive and attractive employer by providing a working environment in which researchers thrive.

PRIO is an equal opportunity employer and values staff diversity.

The Institute is an Inclusive Workplace. PRIO evaluates job satisfaction every year through Annual Work Dialogues between employee and line manager.

The Institute’s finances are solid. However, as an international institute, it is an ambition to further expand the international share of PRIO’s funding, including research projects for the European Commission.

PRIO promotes gender equality within the organisation. It is a strategic objective to increase the proportion of female Research Professors at PRIO. Yet, as is common in the research institute sector in Norway, PRIO has a gender imbalance at the Research Professor level and the Institute has initiated concentrated efforts to rectify this gap through the work of the project on Positioning Women for Research Professorship (POWER).

PRIO employees participate in decision-making bodies at the Institute through membership, or representation, in the Institute Council and the PRIO Board.

The Institute Council plays an essential role in the way PRIO is run. It is an arena for discussion and exchange of information on how PRIO is conducting its business. As defined in the PRIO Statutes, the IC is a consultative body for the Board and the Director and all matters that are to be dealt with by the Board are to be presented to the Institute Council first for its recommendation.

PRIO is first and foremost a research institute, but also engages actively in teaching and training, including the hosting of a Research School on Peace and Conflict (for PhD scholars) in collaboration with University of Oslo and the Norwegian University of Science and Technology. It is a strategic goal to expand strategic collaboration with one or more Norwegian universities.

Action Plan

To achieve these prioritised objectives, the following set of specific activities has been initiated:

Action point Person Responsible Period
Diversify sources of funding, including projects for the European Commission Research Directors 2014-2017
Implement a systematic initiative to strengthen career development for female staff Special Advisor on Project Development and Publication in cooperation with Research Directors 2014-2016
Promote, through academic evaluation, a minimum of three female staff to Researcher Professor The Director 2014-2017
Enhance arts, sports and recreational activities at PRIO, promoting the social work environment The Institute Adviser 2014-2017
Cultivate and refine the work of the Institute Council The Director, with the Administrative Director 2014-2017
Establish and run a Research School to train PhD researchers in the core themes, methods, and skills development relevant to peace research Research School Coordinator 2014-2017
Explore alternative models for collaboration with possible University partners The Director 2014-2017

IV Training

Research Director Ragnhild Nordås teaching a course at the Research School on Peace and Conflict
Research Director Ragnhild Nordås teaching a course at the Research School on Peace and Conflict

In this section we will present PRIO’s action plan for the promotion of the training aspects of the Charter and Code.

Charter and Code Principles

The Charter and Code principles relating to training, state the responsibility of researchers to:

  • Establish a structured and regular relationship with their supervisors and departmental representatives.
  • Devote attention to their multi-faceted role as supervisors, mentors, careers advisors, research leaders, project managers, research coordinators and research communicators.
  • Continually seek to update their skills and competencies.

Furthermore the principles relating to training aspects, state the responsibility of employers and funders to:

  • Give researchers the opportunity for professional development.
  • Identify to whom researchers can refer to for the performance of their professional duties and for supervision.

The Institute’s Priorities

Professional Development at PRIO aims as at strengthening researchers’ competence, and includes a wide range of training initiatives:

  • Courses and workshops
  • Training “brownbag” meetings
  • Forums
  • Retreats
  • External training
  • Further education

Professional development at PRIO is led by a dedicated coordinator, with a small team who will identify competence gaps and provide a structured training response.

It is an objective to facilitate good career progression opportunities for researchers and to enhance academic excellence. To accommodate this, PRIO shall enhance good leadership.

Action Plan

To achieve these prioritised objectives, the following set of specific activities has been initiated:

Action point Person Responsible Period
Establish a professional development programme for researchers at PRIO Special Advisor on Project Development and Publications 2016-2017
Initiate training for the Leader Team at the group level The Director in cooperation with the Special Advisor on Project Development and Publications 2016-2017
Provide regular (every two weeks) informal training sessions on research-related skills Special Advisor on Project Development and Publications in cooperation with the Communications Director 2016-2017
Provide regular (every six weeks) informal training forum on project management Special Advisor on Project Development and Publications in cooperation with the Deputy Administrative Director 2016-2017
Provide access to external training in research leadership The Administrative Director 2016-2017
Strengthen fieldwork capacity at the Institute by facilitating regular meetings in PRIO’s Field Work Network (FIWON) FIWON Coordinator 2014-2017
Facilitate debate on theory across Research Groups at PRIO. Launch and coordinate an internal seminar series on theory at PRIO; the PRIO Theory Network Theory Network Coordinator 2016-2017