The founding members of the eLife Early-Career Advisory Group (ECAG) have helped inspire and bring to life a number of valuable initiatives for the early-career community. To help the group to maintain its energy, creativity and diversity in the future, we are implementing a new process that limits the term of group members and invites the broader early-career community to participate in the appointment of new members.
Members of the eLife Early-Career Advisory Group are scientists who:
- Are studying or conducting research in the life or biological sciences or related field, as a student, medical student, post-doctoral fellow, or junior investigator
- Have no more than five years’ active experience in an independent position
“Active experience” is intended to exclude time away for parental leave, health leave, or other reasons unrelated to research. An independent position is defined here as having secured independent funding.
To be nominated to the ECAG, the individual must have confirmed their status as an early-career researcher (according to the ECAG definition, above) with eLife via this form.
Nominations may be made by anyone who has confirmed their status as an early-career researcher with eLife (as above), by existing ECAG members, or by the eLife editors and staff. Qualified individuals may nominate themselves.
Nominees will be asked to provide a short (~200-word) statement that describes their vision for how different approaches to research communication might improve the career development of early-stage researchers, why they are enthusiastic to join, and how they would contribute to the work of the ECAG.
eLife and the ECAG will review nominations for eligibility and invite new members according to their potential to help advance the work of the group, enthusiasm, and contribution to balance and diversity within the ECAG (with respect to gender, career stage, geography, and research focus).
The role of the Early-Career Advisory Group is to influence and support eLife’s work to catalyse broad reform in journals publishing and research communication and, in particular, to represent the needs and aspirations of researchers at early stages in their careers. Members provide input in a number of ways.
- Offer ideas and advice on new and ongoing efforts with the potential to help early-career scientists
- Provide direct support for ongoing programs, such as monthly webinars
- Lead at least one effort to reach out to early-stage colleagues, to gather their feedback and/or connect them to the network
- Participate in online or in-person events about issues of concern to early-stage researchers
- Attend quarterly phone calls and an annual in-person meeting
The Chair of the ECAG is nominated from among members of the group entering the second year of their term and is elected by the members of the ECAG. A new chair is elected every year. The ECAG chair:
- Encourages and facilitates consistent participation by other members of the group
- Sets the agenda for and facilitates quarterly calls and other meetings
- Works in partnership with eLife staff to help the work of the group to progress
Terms & conditions
Incoming members of the ECAG will serve 2-year terms beginning August 1, 2017. Members may be re-elected in future, provided they continue to be eligible, but may serve no more than two consecutive terms.