Mid-career Conversations for Historians

The Royal Historical Society is pleased to announce a new series of informal, discussion-based events for historians at mid-career. Please note: this series is reserved for those who are current members of the Royal Historical Society.

The new series — ‘Mid-Career Conversations for Historians’ — is an opportunity for historians in UK HE, who are members of the RHS, to meet and discuss topics of particular relevance to them at mid-career. The programme builds on the Society’s existing work for early career researchers, and follows a series of focus groups — held in 2022 — to consider how we also support colleagues further along in their professional lives.

Five online Conversations will be held between February and November 2023.

The first Conversation now takes place at 2pm, Friday 24 February 2023, on the theme of ‘Being a mid-career historian in a non-History department’. This and subsequent sessions will be hosted by Professor Julian Wright, the Society’s Secretary for Professional Engagement, who’ll be joined by members of the RHS Council with direct experience of the topics under discussion.

Mid-career Conversations in 2023

Five themed sessions, for members of the Society, are currently planned for 2023:

  • 2pm, Friday 24 February 2023: ‘Being a mid-career historian in a non-History department’
  • 11am, Thursday 20 April 2023: ‘Embarking on a new research project at mid-career’
  • 11am, Friday 16 June 2023: ‘Becoming a mentor for departmental colleagues’
  • 3pm, Friday 22 September 2023: ‘Engaging with other disciplines in your research and teaching’
  • 2pm, Friday 17 November 2023: ‘Undertaking public history and impact’

‘Mid-career Conversations’ are designed as safe spaces where colleagues can bring ideas, experiences and questions to share with others. We will respect the ‘Chatham House Rules’ convention, Conversations will be confidential to participants and details or points will not be shared outside the sessions.

When there are useful, general points that arise from discussion we might hope to bring these to the Society’s Council to help inform future planning. But above all we hope to create a space that is respectful of different experiences, backgrounds and professional affiliations, and where we can safely network and learn from one another.

Joining February’s Conversation

In this first phase, Conversations will be limited to 15 mid-career historians per session, to enable everyone to contribute fully and exchange experience and ideas.

We welcome proposals for additional subjects for discussion, and will look to continue the series beyond November 2023 if this is of interest to our community. Meetings in 2023 will also trial different start times as we seek to refine the format: Conversations are expected to run for 90 minutes each.

Applications to take part in the first Conversation — ‘Being a mid-career historian in a non-History department’on 24 February 2023 are now invited from current members of the Society. We will then be in touch to confirm attendees no later than Friday 10 February.

For those wishing to join the Society, we offer a range of options including Fellowship, Associate Fellowship, Membership and Postgraduate Membership.