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Our partners

University Partnerships

Universities in the "Fédération Wallonie-Bruxelles"


These six universities are our main partners. We collaborate with them on many strands of the Doctorat.be project, working with them to improve doctoral training, and to boost the employability and career prospects of PhD holders. We also collaborate with the Dutch-speaking universities in Belgium, so as to benefit from the country's cultural and linguistic diversity. 

         UniGR (Université de la Grande Région)

The "Université de la Grande Région" initiative » covers the geographical areas of Saarland and Rhineland-Palatinate (Germany), the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg, Lorraine (France), and Wallonia (Belgium). The initiative hopes to increase mobility amongst students and researchers, and to expand the range of courses available. They have three main aims:

  • To increase mobility;
  • To expand the range of courses available throughout its participating universities;
  • To strengthen cross-border research and doctoral training by creating networks of researchers, opening up access to specialist equipment, and collaborating on doctoral training (transferrable skills, cross-border co-supervision, etc).

Focus Research is a partner of the UNIGR project, helping to deliver the following programme: "Insertion Professionnelle lors des Doctoriales Européennes" (The Integration of European PhD Holders into the Workforce” (see "Action IV").

         Université Pierre et Marie Curie - Institut de la formation doctorale

The work of the IFD (Doctoral Training Institute) does not all take place within the Université Pierre et Marie Curie. The IFD takes part in the Europe-wide doctoral debates on behalf of its host university, participating in the European University Association (EUA), the League of European Research Universities (LERU), and the Network of Universities from the Capitals of Europe (UNICA). 
Jean-Dominique Polack, the Director of the IFD, gave a talk and ran a workshop at the event on the 16th May 2012 entitled “Encadrer efficacement un project doctoral?” ("Good practice for doctoral supervision").

        Université de Poitiers – pôle doctoral

We set up a partnership with the pôle doctoral (Doctoral Centre) in the Université de Poitiers as part of our ongoing collaboration with François Baty-Sorel, an expert on skills assessments for doctoral researchers. Baty-Sorel is one of Focus-Research's team of experts who facilitate our transferrable skills workshops for doctoral researchers and PhD holders. 

Network Memberships


Intelli’Agence (formerly ABG), an organisation in France, supports researchers to transition to the private sector after completing their doctorates. They do this by means of their bilingual website (French-English) (120,000 visits per month, of which 36% are from abroad), and through their users in Belgium.    


EURODOC is the European Council of Doctoral Candidates and Junior Researchers. It is an umbrella group of 34 national doctoral support organisations. It also brings together the wider community of early career researchers from 33 countries in the European Union and Council of Europe. Focus Research participates in their annual conference every year, helping to set the priorities for the upcoming year’s work on the rights, mobility and career-paths of European doctoral researchers and early career researchers.

        ReD - Réseau de doctorants de l'ULg

The ReD, founded in February 2007, is a network which brings together the doctoral researchers at the ULg. Doctoral researchers make up, in practice, a significant proportion of the staff in the Université de Liège, taking on some of the tuition and supervision work, and also doing research. Since the Bologna Process came into effect, doctorates are now considered to make up the third “cycle” of university study. As a result, doctoral researchers are also students, and therefore have a hybrid status between students and staff-members. This is why doctoral researchers have particular needs and encounter specific problems that are not shared by other members of the university. 

Click here for more information about ReD.


BioWin, the Health Cluster of Wallonia, is the regional reference point for all of the stakeholders (companies, research centres and universities) that are involved in innovative R&D projects and skills-development in healthcare biotechnology and medical technology. 

A partnership project that we are involved in is the “stage des pôles”, which supports doctoral researchers who want to do internships in industry during their doctorate. 

         PhD TALENT

PhD Talent is an organization that was founded by doctoral researchers interested in entrepreneurship and innovation. They collaborate with other organisations that bring together doctoral researchers to organise a job fair every year in Paris for PhD holders from all disciplines. 

Event and Project Partnerships


ATM, which is based in Paris, is the first recruitment agency specialised in recruiting PhD holders. The team has a wide range of skills and areas of expertise, and extensive knowledge of doctorates and doctoral training. They support clients throughout the entire recruitment. They also support PhD holders to add value to their skill-sets and to search for jobs. 


Vitae provides resources to support PhD holders and researchers seeking employment. Their Vitae Researcher Development Framework tool enables researchers to design and improve their personal and professional development plans and career plans.


Sanae Saadaoui, holds a doctorate in IT Management, a PRINCE 2 certification in project management, and practices to the standards of ISO 9001. She specialises in incremental performance and quality improvement. In collaboration with Focus Recherche, ITasArt delivers training sessions to doctoral researchers and PhD holders who want to improve their skills, entitled: “Project managing your doctorate”. 

         Campus des Formateurs

Aware of the challenges and problems faced by trainers and companies alike, four companies (A Hermès, A2.be, FormaVox, NOW.be and What's Up) decided to put together a unique network of experts: Campus des Formateurs (Trainers' Campus).

This network, which pools more than 50 years of experience in the field of training in industry, came together to develop a fresh, original and dynamic approach to "Training the Trainer". 

        Conscious Partners

The team has three missions:

- To raise awareness of the “soft skills” (talent, creativity, motivation, knowledge, information, ideas, knowledge…) within organisations. To reconnect people to the core purpose of the organisation and to the real meaning behind their work.

- To generate collaborative intelligence by examining process, structures, meeting styles, and by tackling ego and managing tension within groups.

- Adopting a collaborative governance model anchored in the reality of the work and a collaborative ethos, in order to bring about organisational agility, which is a strength in our increasingly uncertain world. 

Emmanuel and Stéphanie were our facilitators for the Open Forum at [email protected] in 2015.


ASCEO is a consultancy that specialises in providing support, advice and training for scientists, researchers and engineers working in laboratories or in innovative SMEs. Their consultants collaborate with the PRES Lille Nord de France as specialists on doctoral supervision. 

Employment Website Partnerships


Euraxess is an initiative of the European Commission, bringing together 37 member or associate states, promoting and facilitating research mobility. By supporting research mobility, Euraxess helps to ensure that Europe excels at research. The European Research Area offers exceptional opportunities, both to the researchers wanting to develop their careers in other European countries, and to institutions that want to recruit international talent. 


NatureJobs focuses on the needs of scientists, and posts job openings for PhD holders on its job board. This platform also helps employers and researchers to find one another via the CV database, and/or to meet at events (job fairs, conferences, etc). 


ScienceCo is a Belgian company based in Antwerp that connects organisations looking for researchers with PhD-level experts in Europe and beyond. 

        Academic transfer

For the last 30 years, AcademicTransfer has advertised all of the academic posts in public research institutions, universities and medical research centres in the Netherlands. For the last few years, due to popular demand, jobs in the private sector have also been included. 

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