Who doesn’t love a story? People’s career stories can make brilliant case studies, for inspiration and advice. This blog will help you think about where to find case studies and what to do with them once you have them.

Kate Murray, Senior Careers Consultant for Researchers








The Life Scientific thread on the EDIT blog is a wonderful way to access people’s career stories.  From Karen’s story, on moving on from a long career in the NHS, and Helen’s here, on becoming a blogger and writer on mental health matters, via some excellent advice on academic career planning from Thalia here, there are some inspiring stories and pieces of advice.  


And the internet is not short of more places to find out how people with PhDs have moved on.  Find more case studies:

  • In the researcher-specific section of King’s Careers KEATS pages (just self-enrol with your KCL IDs)
  • The IoPPN postdoc Careers Day video is a recording of a Spring 2022 event for IoPPN researchers with an incredible array of speakers who’ve moved industries
  • Research Careers is continually-updating platform with case studies of researchers
  • Don’t forget the box of treasures that is LinkedIn: used as a tool for researching job titles and employer names, it’s a never-ending source of case studies
  • And, finally, Careers in Your Ears is the podcast from King’s Careers aimed at researchers – with interviews with people from a variety of research backgrounds talking about their career journeys and issues that affect researchers.


But faced with this choice, what to do?  How does reading about others help you and your career thinking? After all, what one person does in their current role is not necessarily what you are interested in, have the knowledge to do, or would even exist in five years’ time.

In examining the how, what and why¹ of people’s case study career journeys, utilising them could support your own decision-making, fact-finding or moving roles.  Use these questions to reflect and make sense of these case studies.

How did they find out about their new roles?

How did they make that transition?

How did they shift identities as they moved on?

What did they do to be ready for a career move?

What did they have to do to apply successfully?

What do they do, day to day?

Why did they move on?

Why was that particular role, or organisation, interesting?

Why were they satisfied, or not, with their new role?


Keep being inspired by Life Scientific; come and chat if you’d like some support.

Kate Murray, Senior Careers Consultant, Careers Consultant for Researchers


¹See Yin, cited in https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3141799/ accessed 10/6/22

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