Under this topic, the SSC set itself the objective of identifying areas in which the Swiss ERI system could be made more efficient. Among the factors that could generate inefficiencies, the SSC chose to focus on the postdoc population in Switzerland. There are several indications that this population is growing and will continue to do so. However, while the hiring of postdocs may be a perfectly rational decision at the 'micro' level (laboratories, institutes, SNSF, etc.), the result at an overall system level is not necessarily efficient. Furthermore, there is the issue of job insecurity experienced by some researchers at the postdoctoral level.


The main aim of the SSC study is to quantitatively document this population of postdocs, its evolution over time and its socio-demographic and professional characteristics. This type of data has so far been lacking. The quantitative results have been discussed by a representative sample of postdocs at three workshops. The study also addresses the subsequent careers of these researchers. The aim is to describe and analyse these career paths, in particular whether these postdocs go on to obtain employment in the field of research (public or private), or whether they move into less specialised professions.


A report containing a series of recommendations on this subject is planned for the first half of 2022.