In 2022 Health Data Research UK (HDR UK) joined the Technician Commitment, a nationwide initiative setup to recognise and support the essential role of technicians across universities and research institutions. A year later, we launched our first 24-month action plan, outlining our strategies to support this pledge and address the challenges affecting technical staff in health data research.

Our progress was recently recognised with a milestone submission award at the Technician Commitment signatory event in Wales. The award highlights HDR UK’s commitment to ensuring visibility, recognition, career development and sustainability of technical skills and roles across the health data science sector.

Rosie Wakeham, Head of Training at HDR UK, attended the event and received the award on behalf of the Institute during the evening reception that followed an engaging and interactive day of sector updates, career talks, workshops, and networking.

Reflecting on the day, Rosie said:

The Technician Commitment signatory events are always enjoyable and motivating days, as they present an opportunity to network with the other signatories and learn from their successes. I was honoured to collect HDR UK’s milestone award on behalf of the Institute as it reflects the collaboration between many individuals and teams, and I look forward to HDR UK continuing to support and champion the technical community.”

The recognition award was presented to Rosie by Dr Kelly Vere MBE, Director of Technician Commitment, and the UK Institute for Technical Skills & Strategy (ITSS) at the 12th signatory event hosted by the Technician Commitment in Wales. Photo credit: The Technician Commitment.

Emily Jefferson, Chief Technology Officer at HDR UK and co-lead of the Institute’s Technician Commitment action plan (along with Rosie) said:

“This is great recognition at the midpoint of our action plan. We are proud to be a signatory of the Technician Commitment and look forward to continuing our pledge to support and empower technologists across the health data research sector. Their work and professional development is integral to our mission at HDR UK, to unlock the power of large-scale data to transform public health.”

The event also launched a new report by the Technician Commitment, celebrating seven years of the pledge and showcasing the impact made by organisations that have been part of the initiative since 2017. You can read the report, featuring numerous case studies from across the signatory community, on their website.

About the Technician Commitment

The Technician Commitment is hosted by the UK Institute for Technical Skills & Strategy to improve the visibility, recognition, career development and sustainability of technicians working in higher education and research, across all disciplines. Since 2017, over 120 universities and research institutions have pledged to support, champion, and address the key challenge affecting their technical staff.