Although the employability of doctoral candidates has been a topic of much discussion, the views of key institutional stakeholders on the subject are little understood. In order to address this gap, this study explores the perceptions of doctoral candidates, supervisors and researcher developers through semi‐structured interviews. This small‐scale exploratory study adopted activity theory as an analytical lens in order to explore the key components of the employability development process and the tensions that might arise as a result of their interaction. Tensions identified relate to mismatches between the perceptions of key stakeholders and external requirements, drawbacks of employability development support as well as engagement of community members and low awareness of the rules that underpin the employability development process. The paper argues that in order for the employability agenda to be successful, it needs to become an integral part of the doctoral learning process.
- doctoral studies