Our Technician Commitment

Technicians and technical staff are fundamental to university life. They enable teaching, research and outreach activities. As a partnership founded on supporting research excellence, Midlands Innovation recognises that ensuring recognition and opportunity for its technical community helps us to achieve our aims.

The Midlands Innovation universities have over 2100 technical staff working in their institutions. Since 2015 the Midlands Innovation partnership has embarked on a programme of activities designed to increase the visibility of our technical workforce, to recognise its excellence and to start to think about collaboratively supporting its career development.

The Technician Commitment is a sector wide initiative led by the Science Council and supported by the Gatsby Charitable Foundation’s Technicians Make It Happen campaign. The Commitment aims to ensure visibility, recognition, career development and sustainability for technicians working in higher education and research, across all disciplines.

All eight members of the Midlands Innovation partnership were founding signatories of the Technician Commitment in 2017.

Master Technicians commitment logo long

More information is available about the Technician Commitment from its website.

Our work in this area is led by our a Technical Staff Strategy Committee which brings together technical managers from across the partnership to support our institutional responsibilities under the Technician Commitment and to explore innovative ways in which we can collaborate to further support our technical staff.

Our major areas of activity have included:

  • Establishing the UK Higher Education Technicians Summit; a national conference for technical staff working in higher education and research.
  • Establishing the Papin Prizes; a series of awards to publicly recognise technical excellence in academia.
  • Piloting a collaborative placement programme to enable career development opportunities for our technical staff.

HETS conference 2019. Photos by Alex Wilkinson Media-223

(Professor Alice Roberts - key note speaker for 2019 HETS)

Future work will focus on the development of collaborative training for our technical staff and identifying further areas where collaboration can support the aims of the Technician Commitment.