On March 16 2022, the national conference Healthy PhD Practices took place. Within the framework of the national sector plan Law, this conference was organised by Erasmus Graduate School of Law.
In addition to the substantive themes on which faculties cooperate within the sector plan, attention is also paid to the recruitment of young researchers and reducing the time it takes to obtain a PhD. In addition, the VSNU document healthy practices in the Dutch PhD system is published.
Well-run and timely completed PhD theses are essential for universities and PhD students. Therefore, what can be improved about the PhD culture is at least as necessary because timely completion and wellbeing of PhD students are two sides of the same coin. After all, timely completion is only possible with a healthy PhD practice within our Law Schools.
The conference was opened by our Dean Harriet Schelhaas, followed by a plenary session: Doctoral thesis: test of competence or life's work? by Marijke Malsch, Professor at Open University. In two rounds of workshops, further discussions took place about a PhD on articles, (the role of) progress monitoring, mental wellbeing, size/scope dissertation, and supervisors' role.
Finally, the closing panel, existing of vice deans of research, directors graduate schools and PhD researchers, reflected on the findings from these workshops. These will be summarised and published on the conference website and circulated to all participants. It was concluded that this conversation should continue, both in the faculties and at the national level.