My initiatives

Research Theory and Measurement group

Developing inter-disciplinary research that builds on theory and measurement principles from both disciplines can be challenging. To help overcome these challenges, and help develop research skills, I established the Research Theory and Measurement group at the University of Chicago. We have weekly meetings, with each week aimed at a different theory, measurement, and practical issues for researchers involved in inter-disciplinary research. Previous topic include: balancing research aims and student behaviour in classroom-based research, developing measures that can reflect and integrate multiple theoretical perspectives, and imposter syndrome.

University of Chicago

Melbourne School of Psychological Sciences Early Career Researchers

In 2017 and 2018, I initiated and lead the development of a ECR network at the Melbourne School of Psychological Sciences. Through this, we helped to establish a network of postdoctoral researchers at the School, and create a number of opportunities to facilitate their career growth and development. Since leaving the University of Melbourne, Simon Lilburn has taken over my executive role.

Initiatives I have helped to establish include:

  • an ECR network and committee
  • development of grant writing skills workshops
  • sharing of grant and job opportunity resources
  • establishment of ECR publication awards
  • establishment of ECR project grants
  • establishment of ECR grant writing support network


During my PhD at the Melbourne School of Psychological Sciences, it was clear there was a need to develop a research network between the 150-ish PhD students in the School. In 2011 I established, then ran for two years Graduate Researchers in Psychological Sciences (GRIPS). Since 2013 I stepped down from running GRIPS, allowing a new cohort of  PhD students to run GRIPS.  GRIPS has continued to grow and now serves as a great resource and network for research students at the MSPS, supporting the development of research careers.

If you are a PhD student in the Melbourne School of Psychological Sciences, contact GRIPS to find out more.

Other initiatives

Medicine, Dentistry and Health Sciences ECRs

The Faculty of Medicine, Dentistry and Health Sciences (MDHS) Early Career Researcher (ECR) Network is a not-for-profit, ECR-run group associated with MDHS at the University of Melbourne. It is great network for level A and B researchers in MDHS.

Science of Learning Research Centre

The Science of Learning Research Centre is a Special Research Initiative of the Australian Research Council.
In the Centre, researchers in education, neuroscience and cognitive psychology are working together with
teachers to understand the learning process.

Science of Learning Hub

The Science of Learning Research Hub aims to translate robust learning sciences into educational and pedagogical practice. The Hub includes researchers in education, psychology, neuroscience, computer science, philosophy, sociology and other disciplinary areas.

Summer Series @ My Scholarly Goop

Hanne Watkins is post doctoral research fellow at The University of Pennsylvania. She has been hosting a summer series on her website, inviting early career researchers to discuss their experiences of academic adventure and misadventure. It is fantastic to see an ECR (Hanne) taking this initiative, and great to read different people's perspectives and experiences.