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Let’s talk about the kids

Should you mention caring responsibilities in your funding proposal? Yes, suggests senior adviser in research development Jonathan O’Donnell: it pays to come clean.

Jonathan’s top tips

  • Recognise the impact of your caring responsibilities on your research.
  • Do not belittle it, or pretend that it is negligible.
  • Instead, be proud, honest and positive about how it has changed your career.
  • Ask for the help and flexibility necessary to accommodate these responsibilities.

Before I begin, I need to make it clear that I have no children. As such, I apologise if some of what I say about families and research is a little off kilter. Think of me as the stereotypical reader of your application: an older male, with no children in sight.

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