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PhD Discussion Forum

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This Category: > PhD Advice / Support


Applying for postdoc overseas with new baby

User: matt6571 - 10 January 2016 05:51

My situation:

28.5 years old. 1 year into PhD in Australia. Would like to go overseas (to Europe) for postdoc after finishing. Have partner (also 28.5 years old, not doing phd) who is very supportive and has known from the outset that it what I’d like to do. She’s starting to think about babies, and would be happy to live in a foreign country if she could have a child and be primary caregiver. So we could aim to have a baby just before I finish PhD with a view to take it overseas with us.

I think it’s a good idea, assuming I can get a postdoc in a suitable country (I’m thinking Switzerland, France, Germany, Denmark, Netherlands, etc) however am having some trepidation, namely whether I will be able to get a postdoc.

So my questions to the good people of this forum are….

How ‘hard’ is it to get a postdoc in Europe? Did you find there was a waiting period whilst looking for funding etc?
Does having a young family change ability to get a postdoc? If so how?
What are the most important things that I can do now to ensure success when applying for postdoc in a few years time?
Any other advice to offer regarding our potential future plans?


User: TreeofLife - 11 January 2016 11:16

Love the precision on age...I guess 28.5 years, rather than 28 or 29, makes a difference!

I'm currently doing a postdoc in the UK.

It's fairly easy to get a postdoc if you have a good reference, come from a good uni, have well-known supervisors, have publications, have a good attitude and have the expertise they specify.

If a postdoc is advertised, they already have the funding, so you can get paid from the start date.

They can't discriminate on the basis of family status, and to be honest, most academics are very encouraging towards postdocs wanting families and working conditions are pretty flexible.

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