Working Group on Skills

Final report from this working group to download, history of the group and biographies of members

Final report is available

The report, "Providing researchers with the skills and competencies they need to practice Open Science", is rooted in the policy for researcher career development and (like the rewards report) closely linked with ERA Priority 3, an Open Labour Market for Researchers.

In the report, the working group defined Open Science skills needs for researchers so that skilled talent:

  • can publish under Open Access
  • manage (open)data
  • conduct professional research
  • engage with citizen science

The report contains an overview of the current Open Science skills provision landscape. This overview is based on results of an Open Science survey conducted with 1,277 researchers at all career stages.

The report also proposes a European Skills and Qualifications Matrix for Open Science, highlighting the importance of introducing and integrating (accredited) skills training for researchers at all career stages.

The importance of embedding Open Science in ERA policy is treated and the specific cases of the Innovative Doctoral Training Principles and the European Framework for Research Careers are presented.

The report will be discussed at the Open Science Policy Platform meeting on 13 October 2017.


A Working Group on Skills was set up (as a sub-group of the Steering Group Human Resources and Mobility (SGHRM) and conducted its work between June 2016 and June 2017.

The Working Group’s tasks were, among others:

  • Introduce Open Science education and training that is tailored to the four research career stages (R1 to R4)
  • Include Open Science modules with credits in all European Doctoral Training Programmes (Doctoral level), by 2020
  • Revive the Doctorate in Europe discussion with the Steering Group on Human Resources and Mobility and link it closely to Open Science issues which will need to be incorporated
  • Link the Innovative Doctoral Training principles to Open Science practices to encompass an open research environment
  • Explore together with the Open Science Policy Platform how training in Open Science practices could be addressed in early education (bachelor, master, high school) and propose concrete measures to team up with existing Commission policy initiatives on Education (associate DG EAC, they have the lead)
  • Discuss and develop links between the European Skills agenda and contribution to its implementation supported by Open Science practices


Members of the Expert Group

Conor O'Carroll, Chair

Research Policy & Funding Consultant at SciPol

Chair of the ERA Steering Group on Human Resources and Mobility (SGHRM) focusing on researcher career development. Led the development of the European Framework for Research Careers (EFRC) and the Principles for Innovative Doctoral Training (PIDT).

Physicist by training with a B.Sc., M.Sc. in Mathematical Physics and PhD in Physics from University College Dublin.

Caroline Lynn Kamerlin, Vice-Chair

Professor of Structural Biology at Uppsala University, and fellow and former Chair of the Young Academy of Europe (Chair 2014-2015)

Lynn is also a fellow of the Royal Society of Chemistry (FRSC) 2017, the Wallenberg Academy Fellowship 2014-2019 and she won the MGMS Silver Jubilee Prize 2013. Furthermore she is an ERC Starting Independent Researcher 2012-2017 and she received the Sven and Ebba-Christina Hagberg Prize in Biochemistry from the Swedish Royal Academy of Sciences 2011.

Niamh Brennan

Programme Manager for Research Informatics in Trinity College Library Dublin

She is responsible for the development of Trinity's Research Support System and its institutional repository, TARA (Trinity's Access to Research Archive). Dr Brennan is a member of several national and international groups; these include Ireland's National Open Science Forum, DART-Europe, OpenAIRE2020 and OpenAIRE Advance. She is a member of the management councils of two key Irish journals in economics and social sciences and has partnered in a number of research projects in digital humanities, international development and social sciences.

Berit Hyllseth

Research Council of Norway, SGHRM Member

Ulrike Kohl

Talent Attraction & Capacity Building, Luxembourg National Research Fund

Ulrike Kohl is the Head of the Talent Attraction & Capacity Building Unit. Contact for ATTRACT programme: bringing outstanding researchers to Luxembourg.

Gareth O’Neill

PhD candidate and lecturer at Leiden University, President of EURODOC

Rinske van den Berg

Policy Officer at Directorate-General for Research & Innovation, European Commission


Contributions from:

Lidia Borrell-Damian - Research Director, European Universities Association

David Nicholas - Director, CIBER Research Ltd.

Chiara Riondino - Policy Officer, DG EMPL, European Commission

Johan Rooryck - Professor of French Linguistics, Leiden University

Julie Sainz - Policy Officer, DG EAC, European Commission

Milena Slacheva - Policy Analyst, JRC, DG RTD, European Commission

Nils Woerner - German Rectors Conference (HRK)

Lukas Zendulka - Ministry of Education, Slovakia and SGHRM Member