eLife Ambassadors: Introducing ECRcentral

The community-curated website aims to connect early-career researchers with funding opportunities, useful resources and each other.

The volunteers behind a popular funding list for early-career researchers (ECR) release a result of their year’s work as eLife Ambassadors – a community-curated platform for all resources early-career researchers may find useful.

Aziz Khan (University of Oslo, Norway), Juan Quintana (Wellcome Centre for Anti-Infectives Research, UK), Lotte de Winde (eLife ECAG, MRC Laboratory for Molecular Cell Biology, UK), and Cristiana Cruceanu (Max Planck Institute of Psychiatry, Germany) started from an idea to create a searchable, international list of fellowships and travel grants for their peers. Reaching that goal relatively quickly, the group started brainstorming other useful features. Today they’re launching an online platform rich with resources for the early-career community at large and ready for further contributions.

While more ideas are still coming, Juan Quintana, who started the initial funding list said: “To me it makes sense to make the platform available now. We will keep working to improve it further going forward.”

ECRcentral is a searchable database of assorted funding opportunities. The list is curated by the community and anyone can add new fellowships and travel grants. It also enables scientists to easily offer and seek advice from each other.

On top of that, the platform gives access to a number of useful resources related to funding and career development, key skills for better reproducibility and science communication. There’s also a discussion forum to facilitate topical conversations.

The website is based on open-source technology, with all source code and documentation available in their GitHub repository. Contributions to the content as well as to the technical side of the platform are invited.

The group is already paving the way for more community engagement with the site by launching a competition for a new logo for this service – all details can be found on ECRcentral.

Aziz Khan, who sparked the idea and is the main developer behind the platform, said:

“We envisaged this as a platform by early-career researchers for early-career researchers to find and discuss funding opportunities, share experiences, mentor peers and create impact through community engagement.”

  1. Explore ECRcentral

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