The Centre for Research & Development Monitoring (Expertisecentrum Onderzoek en Ontwikkelingsmonitoring, ECOOM) is an interuniversity consortium with participation of all Flemish universities (KU Leuven, UGent, VUB, UAntwerp and UHasselt). Its mission is to develop a consistent system of R&D and Innovation (RD&I) indicators for the Flemish government. This indicator system has to assist the Flemish government in mapping and monitoring the RD&I efforts in the Flemish region. The research within ECOOM UGent focuses on the human potential involved in research in Flanders. Who are the researchers and doctorate holders in Flanders, how do they evolve and what drives them? We look into how doctoral programs can be optimized so that PhD students can not only conclude with a successful PhD, but are also immediately prepared for the career phase that follows. An answer to these questions is provided by, among other things, continuous monitoring and repeated surveys of the researchers.