Registration starts now!

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Registration for the fourth edition of National PhD day on September 23rd 2017 has now opened!
Admission is completely free for PhD candidates and registration will run until the 18th of September. The day starts at 10:00 AM, with the official opening at 11:00 AM, followed by the keynote speeches. The afternoon is reserved for 12 workshops, divided over three rounds. We will end the day with the Supervisor Award and drinks. Please study the graphic below carefully to see which workshops you want to register for. You can only choose one workshop per round. Once registered, you cannot switch between workshops. All the information about the workshops can be found on the website and on our Facebook page throughout the registration period.

Building a business out of your PhD? (round 1 – 90 people)
Can you use your PhD research as the basis for entrepreneurship?

Dare to present in an outstanding way! (round 1 – 40 people)
Use theatre tools to present your exciting results in the way they deserve.

How to stand out during your dissertation defense (round 1 – 40 people)
What to expect during the defense and prepare for any questions you might get.

The future of publishing – Dare to go digital (round 1 – 40 people)
Word or pdf are vulnerable digital formats, the future of keeping your data safe is XML!

How to stand out online! – Using social media for an optimal online profile (round 2 – 90 people)
Power up your professional online profile on platforms like LinkedIn and Facebook.

The secret of writing great sentences – Dare to steal prose writers skills (round 2 – 40 people)
Learn from prose writers to do justice to the content of your data.

How to stand out during your dissertation defense (round 2 – 40 people)
What to expect during the defense and prepare for any questions you might get.

Shape your career (round 2 – 40 people)
What is your ideal job and how would you approach the (Dutch) labour market?

Do you dare to live to your capabilities? (round 3 – 90 people)
Discover your capabilities and the internal factors that drive you, within and without your PhD work.

Saving tons of writing time – Dare to listen to te voice of the content (round 3 – 40 people)
Professional researchers are not professional writers, but you can write with more efficiency and joy.

Design a thesis cover that stands out! (round 3 – 40 people)
Design a thesis cover with that extra touch, make something that’s unique, really you and stands out!

Me at my best – Dare to show the best of you on stage (round 3 – 40 people)
You don’t just present your data, you’re presenting yourself as well!


National PhD Day 2017 – Save the date!

posted in: Announcement, News | 0

PNN would like to invite you to the highly anticipated fourth edtion of National PhD Day, with the theme: Dare to stand out! Be sure to block Saturday 23rd of September in your schedule and make your way to Radboud University in Nijmegen to join us. There will be interesting workshops, inspiring keynote lectures, and the supervisor award ceremony to attend, together with PhD candidates from all fields of research.

For more information about #NationalPhDDay; follow us on FacebookTwitter where more details will be announced shortly.

National PhD Day
23rd September 2017
Location: Radboud University Nijmegen

Save the date! 

Evaluate National PhD Day 2016 & win a prize!

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We are very curious to hear how you experienced this third edition of National PhD Day 2016.  Did you enjoy the workshops, would you recommend it to coworkers, let us know!

Please fill out our evaluation form and tell us how we can improve this day and make National PhD Day 2017 even better!

If you leave your email address at the end of the questionnaire, you will have a chance at winning the professional profile picture photoshoot, offered to you by Mariske Krijgsman of LinkedInProfielfotograaf (value of €100)*.

* One entry per person, only for participants of National PhD Day 2016. Deadline: Wednesday 9th November 2016. Winner will be announced on Friday 11th of November.

Important: no need to wait for the announcement of the winner, before using the voucher in the goodiebag; in that case we’ll let LinkedInProfielfotograaf know you’re our winner!


Go to the —> evaluation form <—-

National PhD Day – Frequently Asked Questions

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We’re getting quite a bit of emails about the details of National PhD Day. Great to hear that you’re all very excited about this Saturday, but to speed up the process of answering those emails, please check out our FAQ:

Q: What is the address of the Academy Building?

A: Check out our special Travel & Stay page


Q: At what time does National PhD Day start?

A: Registration will start at 10:00, official opening will start at 11:00. Check out the timetable.


Q: Do I need to bring a copy of my registration/ID/proof that I am a PhD?

A: No need, just mention your name at the registration desk and you will get access to National PhD Day.


Q: Which workshops did I register for?

A: Fortunately, you received a confirmation email (from: with all the details of your registration. Please check your spam folder if you can’t find it.


Q: I did not receive the confirmation email (I checked the spam folder)?

A: If the email is not in the spam folder and you can’t remember which workshops you selected, don’t stress. We have lists at the registration desk for you to check which workshops you registered for.


Q: Do I need to prepare for the workshops?

A: Some workshops to require some preparation. The assignments were mentioned in the newsletter with Final Information and are listed here.


Q: Can I switch workshops or just go to a different workshop than the workshop I registered for?

A: Unfortunately the amount of seats per workshop room is limited and all workshops are fully booked. So you can only go to the workshops you registered for.


Still unanswered questions that can’t wait until Saturday? Let us know by sending us an email and we’ll get back to you!


See you this Saturday!

Preparation for workshops

posted in: Workshop | 0

Please check below if there are any preparations required for your workshops:

Working softly

To prepare for the workshop Working Softly, please reflect on the following:

What is working hard for you? When are you working hard? Which days/hours? What do you think when you are working hard? How does it feel physically (your forehead, eyes, neck, shoulders, belly, legs, feet, etc.)? What do others notice about you when you are working hard? What do you experience on the inside?

And how is all of this when you are working softly?


Design your own thesis cover

Hi PhD!

Thank you for subscribing for my workshop! I’m sending you a small, fun assignment to do at home as a warm-up for the 29th of October.

Over the next weeks look around you. Gather things you like, take pictures. What do you like about them? The colour, the composition, the letters? You can have a look at theses, but you really don’t have to. Magazines, tickets, music posters, they can all inspire you.

Please take everything you found with you to the workshop. It’ll help you to get going. Also, don’t forget to bring a pencil.

Enjoy, you’ll see the world with new eyes!


Crashcourse Cleaning Messy Data

Please bring your fully charged (!) laptop to the workshop, with the software ‘OpenRefine’ already downloaded at home.

You can download OpenRefine here


Skills for the PhD Afterlife

Dear participants,

How nice that you are joining our workshop!

We would like you to prepare beforehand with a short exercise, which
should not take more than 15-20 minutes.

This will give you the opportunity to come to the workshop with the
right mindset.


Please fill in the Belbin questionnaire (download here) and add
up the number of points for each team role.
Take note of your most preferred role -and of your second most
preferred, if the scores are very similar.

Read the descriptions of your team role and think about the following

– do you recognize yourself in the description? How do the
skills characterizing your role emerge in your daily research work?

– and can you assess what team role might your supervisor have?

There is no need to send us the results of the test beforehand, but
those will be used as a starting point for our discussion, so it is
important for you to prepare in advance.

Looking forward to meet on the 29th of October!

Frerik & Serena

Workshopleaders ‘Skills for the PhD Afterlife’
National PhD Day 2016


Job application new style

Would you appreciate a cv check prior to the training or do you have specific questions about job applications? Please send your cv and/or questions before October 26 to, referring to Training Job application National PhD Day.

Food for thought: Rens van de Schoot

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Besides providing a nutritious lunch, we’d like to give you some food for thought at National PhD Day 2016. Join us at lunchtime in the Kanunnikenzaal for a special discussion on questionable research practices by Rens van de Schoot


Temptation Island: Do you need questionable research practices to survive academia? By Rens van de Schoot, associate professor at the department of methods & statistics at Utrecht University | | @rensvdschoot

Description of Food for Though session

Science has always been a dynamic process with continuously changing rules and attitudes. While innovation and new knowledge production are essential in academia, making sure the best practices in research are widely known is vital. However, rules and traditions on responsible research practices differ greatly between research disciplines and often different rules apply in different fields. Most of these rules are subjective and in fact ‘unwritten’ that makes them difficult to identify, differentiate and grasp. The current debate about appropriate scientific practices is fierce and lively and has moved from academia to the public domain, resulting in many public opinions, not solely driven by objective information, but instead loaded by emotions. Many Early career scientists feel uncertain of how to act and who to talk to.

The Young Academy of the KNAW ( has started a project titled ‘The living room of science: promoting responsible research practices through an interactive discussion’. The ultimate goal of this project is to create an accessible online open platform for early career scientists (ranging from Phd students to young assistant professors) to acquire information about appropriate research practices. We hope that arguments like “this is how we always do it”, or “get used to it, this is what it takes to publish your paper” will no longer be used.

The lunch session at the National PhD Day can be seen as a part of this larger project. I will present the results of a vignette study among PhD-students in The Netherlands and Belgium about responsible research practices (carried out in collaboration with PNN). Topics are data fabrication, deleting outliers to get significant effects, salami slicing, gift authorship and excluding information from your paper. Together we will search for ways to improve current research practices by means of an interactive discussion. So, bring your phone with you!

For more information about the programme, go to the programme page.

Keynote speaker National PhD Day: Martijn Kleppe

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Today we’d like to further introduce one of our keynote speakers at National PhD Day 2016:

Dr. Martijn Kleppe works at the Research Department of the National Library of the Netherlands. After writing his dissertation on Iconic Photographs (Canonieke Icoonfoto’s, 2013) he worked as postdoctorate researcher on several Digital Humanities project at the Erasmus University Rotterdam that focussed on opening up and linking (audio) visual collections: Together with 12 partners he worked on the FP7-project AXES-Access to Audiovisual Archives and he supervised the projects PoliMedia, Talk of Europe and Mijn Icoonfoto’s. Before moving to the National Library of the Netherlands he worked at the Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam on the project ‘The New News Consumer’ and was researcher in residence at the KB. Since February 2016 he moved to the National Library of the Netherlands to work on several Digital Humanities projects.

Besides this position at the KB, he is editor of TMG – Journal for Mediahistory, founding member of the ADHO Audiovisual Material in Digital Humanities Special interest group and regularly writes about photography and digital research for a general/non-academic public in newspapers or magazines.

Martijn, what was the best advice ever given to you?

Share your doubts. When I attended a research seminar in the first year of my PhD, one of my academic heroes presented a new research project for the first time. While he was always very confident about his work, he started his presentation by saying: ‘This is new and I know there are people in the room who know way more about this topic than I do. However, I need your advice but especially your critique. This is the only way for me to get forward.’ Though my hero was already in a comfortable position, I admired the vulnerable stance he took.

How did you take charge of your career?

By realizing my fascination is in charge of my career.  Not my current contract, project or supervisor.
In several projects I collaborated with both academic as well as non-academic partners. To get to know these non-academic partners I gave myself some time to understand why they participated in these projects. I visited them, worked at their premises and drank loads of coffee during 1 on 1 meetings with people I was interested in. Along the way I realized I liked the scientific side of these projects but got more and more curious on how to implement our academic research results. At that point I (finally) was in a relatively stable position, contract-wise, and worked on a NWO-funded project that was only halfway. Then I got the opportunity to take up a temporarily job at one of the partners I worked with before and admired most for their ambitions to incorporate academic research results in their core activities. What should I do? Loose my (almost fixed) contract and let me colleagues down by leaving a project that was only halfway? Or take up a temporarily contract in a world I did not know? Most of my academic colleagues thought I was completely out of my mind when I shared my possible job move with them: What? Are you willing to quite your job now you finally have a good position? But most of them said: Your boss and institute will not be happy when you will not finish the project and quit your contract. This was exactly the reason I was hesitant as well: these people worked so hard to get me a contract and now I am leaving them. Shouldn’t I be more loyal to them? It took me a while to realize I shouldn’t be: there will be plenty of colleagues who can take over my tasks while it will take some time before I will get another chance to follow my fascination. Let’s take that chance. I am in charge of my career. Nobody else.

For more information on Martijn Kleppe, visit his biopage and follow him on twitter: @martijnkleppe.

Keynote speaker National PhD Day: Sarah de Rijcke

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Today we’d like to further introduce one of our keynote speakers at National PhD Day 2016:

Dr. Sarah de Rijcke, associate professor and deputy director at the Centre for Science & Technology Studies (CWTS) in Leiden. Before coming to Leiden she held a postdoctoral position at the Virtual Knowledge Studio (KNAW, Amsterdam). In 2010, she received her PhD (with honors) from the University of Groningen. As of June of this year, she is an elected member of the Young Academy of Europe.

Her research group focuses on a) developing a theoretical framework on the (micro-) politics of contemporary research assessment; b) gaining a deep empirical understanding on how formal and informal evaluation practices are re-shaping academic knowledge production; c) contributing to shaping contemporary debates on responsible research evaluation and metrics uses (including policy implications).

Sarah de Rijcke

Sarah, what was the best advice ever given to you?

Best advice: Be generous. This is something I learned by observing senior colleagues whom I admired while doing my PhD. They followed their curiosity and drive, and generously shared their knowledge and experience with me and other early-stage researchers. As I progressed on the career ladder I increasingly realized how important it is to set such an example in a system that inadvertently stimulates careerism.

How did you take charge of your career?

I took charge of my career in two ways: 1) I always choose collaborators carefully, not only on the basis of their scholarly skills, but also on their trustworthiness and whether liked them as a person. This has been very rewarding intellectually and socially. And 2) I tend to conveniently ‘forget’ that there is gender bias in academia and think it is absolutely normal to ‘lean in’, to use Sheryl Sandberg’s term.

For more information on Sarah de Rijcke, visit her biopage and follow her on twitter: @sarahderijcke.

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