RDFVitae Researcher Development Framework (RDF)

Vitae has also commissioned a professional development tool, called the Research Development Framework (RDF), to support the holistic professional development of researchers.  

The RDF sets out the knowledge, behaviours, and attributes that all researchers are expected to develop and demonstrate across their career span. 

About the RDF

The Vitae Researcher Development Framework (RDF) is structured into four domains covering the knowledge, behaviours and attributes of researchers. It sets out the wide-ranging knowledge, intellectual abilities, techniques and professional standards expected to do research, as well as the personal qualities, knowledge and skills to work with others and ensure the wider impact of research. Within each of the domains there are three sub-domains and associated descriptors.

The RDF Domains

  • Domain A: Knowledge and intellectual abilities: The knowledge, intellectual abilities and techniques to do research
  • Domain B: Personal effectiveness: The personal qualities and approach to be an effective researcher
  • Domain C: Research governance and organisation: Knowledge of  the professional standards and requirements to do research
  • Domain D: Engagement, influence and impact: The knowledge and skills to work with others to ensure the wider impact of research

Using the Framework

Researchers can map their professional development using the Vitae RDF Planner.

RDF Wheel