Postdoctoral Researchers at York University, Senate Policy on

Postdoctoral Researchers at York University, Senate Policy on

Legislative History:

Approved by Academic Policy, Planning and Research Committee 2017/04/20; Approved by Senate 2017/04/27.

Approval Authority: Senate

Signature: Maureen Armstrong

Policy Statement

Postdoctoral researchers are individuals professionally conducting research after the completion of their doctoral studies. As integral members of the York University research community, postdoctoral researchers make valuable contributions to their research fields, and are vital to the achievement of University Academic Plan objectives and other planning goals.

Scope and Definitions

This policy applies to postdoctoral fellows categorized as:

  • Postdoctoral Visitors (PDVs) whose status is defined by the York University Faculty Association (YUFA) Collective Agreement
  • Postdoctoral Fellows (PDFs) whose status is determined by an external award or funding source

Criteria for Positions and Appointments

The following criteria apply to these positions and the individuals who hold them:

  1. Positions
  1. The fellowship shall be primarily research focused.
  2. The fellowship shall have a duration of no less than three (3) months.
  3. The fellowship shall be time limited at York University, normally up to three (3) years, and may not exceed four (4) years.
  4. Fellowships are intended to be full time. Exceptions may be permitted at the discretion of the Dean. All part-time fellowships shall offer the appointee a robust research and professional development opportunity.  They are governed by, and shall adhere to, all aspects of this Policy.

b. Appointees

  1. Appointees must have completed all requirements for a PhD.
  2. Appointees may not hold a full-time faculty member appointment at any university.
  3. All appointees shall be supervised by a full-time faculty member at York.
  4. The work of the appointee must meet the standards set by the supervisor and must comply with all relevant regulations, policies and procedures of York University.


  1. Administrative procedures for the engagement of post-doctoral researchers shall be set by the Faculty of Graduate Studies and implemented by all Faculties.
  2. The conduct of postdoctoral research is governed by University and Senate policies and procedures, including but not limited to the Senate Policy on Responsible Conduct of Research.

Dispute Resolution

In the event of a dispute between a postdoctoral researcher and any other member of the York University community, University policies, procedures and regulations apply. The Faculty of Graduate Studies shall

  1. maintain current information on supports and applicable processes for dispute resolution involving postdoctoral researchers
  2. respond to procedural inquiries and provide guidance upon request

 Intellectual Property

An Intellectual Property Agreement between a postdoctoral researcher and supervisor that conforms to York University regulations on Intellectual Property shall be put in place before the start date of each fellowship. Deviations from standard Intellectual Property agreements shall be reviewed and approved by the Faculty of Graduate Studies and Vice-President Research & Innovation (VPRI).

Professional Development

 Professional Development activities are central to the success of York University’s postdoctoral researchers. It is expected that all appointees shall be encouraged to participate regularly in professional development programming and academic life across the campuses.