Academics need to talk

07 May 2020

We all understand how important networking is in the academic and research community, and how hard it can be even during normal circumstances. Yet now we find ourselves living in trying times, and the current global situation means we need an extraordinary response on how we keep working, talking, and building relationships with each other. We need a response that can take the opportunity that has arisen from many of us having to work away from our normal working environments, to lay the foundations of a new academic community that can survive, and thrive, long after the pandemic is over.

A global networking initiative

This is why UCL has launched ‘Academics Need to Talk’, a new global networking initiative to help academics and researchers reach out to each other at this difficult time. The network was designed to be as versatile as possible, an operational tool that leaves its users free to find like-minded academics around the world based around shared subjects, interests and values. ANT can be used to facilitate discussions on a range of topics, such as;

  • Building collaborative working relationships with academics from around the world that you may otherwise have not had the opportunity to meet;
  • Facilitating deep and meaningful mentoring networks regardless of where you are in the world;
  • Discussing your research with like-minded researchers;
  • Sharing ideas for new projects and collaboration; or
  • Sharing tips and advice about applying for grants or funding for example.
  • Or even finding friendly face to chat to about how you are coping during the pandemic.

Open to all academics

This network is open to all, regardless of subject specialism, institution, or where you are in the world. We want ANT to help give us purpose, spread kindness and strengthen the bonds of the academic community. All we ask is that you, the researchers, the academics, the students and the doctors give up some of your time to connect with each other. You can offer as much, or as little time as you like and you have control of who you interact with.

Registration is easy

It is simple to register, all you will need to do is sign up for a Calendly account  and follow the instructions on our webpage ( then you will be able to start talking. You can arrange to chat with people who have the same research areas as you, provide virtual support to your colleagues, offer advice on working remotely or forge new collaborations.

Like all networks, this will work best if we all share with our colleagues this new resource and get as many people as we can chatting. Please feel free to share the ANT webpage on social media, or with your colleagues.