“I feel the Euraxess portal is like an ocean where you can find the fish of your choice. … It has offered me a place to enhance my career, employability and skills development”, this is how Rudrani Gajraj, an Indian Marie Curie Interactive Training Networks Fellow at the University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences, Vienna (BOKU), described the EU platform Euraxess. For Nicole Rogaunig, staff office for appointment affairs at the Vienna University of Economics and Business, Euraxess is a reliable source of information in the field of relocation and integration. She especially appreciates the exchange with colleagues from similar fields of work through events, webinars and CoLabs.
The Euraxess initiative https://euraxess.ec.europa.eu is a global platform initiated by the European Commission that offers researchers and their employers a job database and a broad range of services and information as well as advice on practical day-to-day issues. Employers can post their research job offers on the platform free of charge, researchers can upload their CVs. Euraxess Jobs is thus a perfect networking platform for researchers and employers.
There are currently more than 600 Euraxess Centres in 42 countries in Europe. The Euraxess Worldwide network supports researchers working outside Europe through networking activities and information about career opportunities in Europe. Euraxess Worldwide has dedicated teams in ASEAN, Australia/New Zealand, China, India, Japan, Korea, Latin America and the Caribbean as well as North America (as of 2022 also in Africa).
The OeAD is the national representative and service centre and manages the national portal and network
In Austria Euraxess is jointly supported by the Federal Ministry of Education, Science and Research (BMBWF), the OeAD, the FFG (Austrian Research Promotion Agency) and many higher education and research institutions. In the last few years the Euraxess network has established itself as a valuable national and Europe-wide exchange platform on best practice examples for the establishment and expansion of welcome services and career centres for researchers.
The OeAD has been part of the network since the beginning of the EU initiative and it is one of the two national representatives of Austria, along with the FFG. It manages the national Euraxess portal www.euraxess.at, coordinates the national network, as Euraxess Centre answers hundreds of enquiries per year from mainly pre-docs and post-docs about fellowships and research funding, entry and residence (visas) as well as work permits and provides flats for international researchers all over Austria via OeAD student housing.
Minimising obstacles to mobility and promoting jobs in research
The initiative was launched in 2003 – at that time still with a network of Mobility Centres that supported “mobile” researchers. The aim was to minimise obstacles to mobility; the first portal was called “Researcher’s Mobility Portal Austria”. At the same time a database for jobs in research was established and further steps were taken to improve the working conditions of researchers in Europe and to support research institutions in implementing career development strategies. In 2005 the “European Charter for Researchers” and the “Code of Conduct for the Recruitment of Researchers” were published. Some 1,300 organisations across Europe, including the OeAD, have so far endorsed these Charter & Code principles. Three years later, in 2008, the above-mentioned initiatives merged to form “Euraxess – Researchers in Motion”.
Increasing career opportunities, intersectoral mobility, integration of international researchers
Since then the services have been constantly optimised and additional focus areas, such as career planning and career development, have been added. New tools and resources have been developed in a number of accompanying projects, and support for careers in non-academic areas, such as industry and entrepreneurship, are new additions.
The OeAD has been involved in four projects so far – in close cooperation with the Austrian higher education and research institutions – and is mainly engaged in the following areas:
- Integration of international researchers and their families (Euraxess Austria Meeting Point Vienna)
- Dual Career Service (support for partners in their professional careers; see An Analysis of Dual Career and Integration Services)
- Integration of refugee researchers into the labour market (see Guide on Labour Market Integration of Refugee Researchers)
In the autumn of 2021 the fifth project will start; in this project the OeAD will dedicate itself to the topic of gender.
Euraxess Meeting Point Vienna: https://www.facebook.com/euraxessVIENNA
Scholarships and research funding: www.grants.at
Author: Maria Unger