A key resource for your professional development A key resource for your professional development

The Researcher Development Statement (RDS) is the key reference statement for the development of postgraduate researchers' skills and attributes and for researchers employed in higher education. It has recently been endorsed by the Funding Councils. The RDS sets out the knowledge, behaviours and attributes of effective and highly skilled researchers appropriate for a wide range of careers.

Both RDS and RDF are structured in four domains, each containing three Sub-Domains:

A: Knowledge and intellectual abilities  

  1. Knowledge base
  2. Cognitive abilities
  3. Creativity 

B: Personal effectiveness  

  1. Personal qualities
  2. Self-management
  3. Professional and career development

C: Research governance and organisation  

  1. Professional conduct
  2. Research management
  3. Finance, funding and resources

D: Engagement, influence and impact  

  1. Working with others
  2. Communication and dissemination
  3. Engagement and impact

The Researcher Development Statement is a reference document that includes the domains, sub domains and descriptors of the full framework in a useful format for policy makers and research organizations that are planning the support and development of researchers in higher education. It can be found at:

It is a good summary to print out and use for planning your development.  In addition, each module has been mapped against the RDF to enable you to plan your training and professional development across all four RDS domains.