The Gender Equality Office of Koç University (GEO) collaborates with the Koç University Working Group for the development and implementation of a “Human Resources Strategy for Researchers” (HRS4R) to implement fair and transparent recruitment and appraisal procedures for researchers. The HRS4R is a voluntary process where research institutions align their human resource policies with the 40 principles of the Charter & Code for fair and transparent recruitment and appraisal procedures. The European Commission recognizes the institutions that make progress in aligning their human resources policies with the principles set out in the Charter & Code with the “HR Excellence in Research Award”. KU aims to improve HR practices for researchers in ethical and professional aspects, recruitment and selection, working conditions and social security, training, and development.

In this regard, KUGEP identifies the areas for collaboration between the GEO and the HRS4R team. The review of the instructional structure and policies by KUGEP revealed the lack of standardized recruitment and career support structures for early career researchers, especially at the R2 level, which was also diagnosed by the HRS4R Award Task Force in 2018. To address this issue, both teams collaborate to achieve and maintain gender balance in KU leadership, establish work-life balance and family-friendly workplace, and develop open, transparent, and merit-based recruitment procedures promoting gender equality for R2 level postdoctoral researchers.

Furthermore, they also aim to improve gender-sensitive recruitment and career services for early career researchers through close coordination and collaboration between the Gender Equality Office and HRS4R Action Plan Task Force. They plan to revitalize the Researcher Development Office with an enhanced and revised Researcher Development Framework to support the career development of early career researchers with a gender-sensitive approach. In addition, they will organize a task force composed of R1-R2 researchers from all disciplines to diagnose gendered discriminations encountered and develop policy recommendations and institutional solutions to improve the working conditions and career needs of young researcher bodies.

The collaboration between GEO and the HRS4R team has many common objectives and actions to realize the goals of implementing fair and transparent recruitment and appraisal procedures for researchers, improving HR practices for researchers, and developing career support structures for early career researchers.