Metaphors for community building, new trainings, and exploring open-source tools
This month, our community programming has focused on different ways of using the metaphor of a house party to discuss common (and not so common) scenarios in STEM community management. We published a series of essays on our blog, and then hosted a community call last week to discuss the concepts we wrote about and take the metaphor in new directions with our members.
Why? Metaphors, when recognizable to your audience, can be a helpful problem-solving tool, allowing you to get creative about scenarios that you may be encountering. For example, if you’re thinking about how your members are welcomed into your community, the house party metaphor might highlight the fact that while you offer your members a warm welcome at the front door, you don’t necessarily show them which room to head to first or introduce them to someone to talk to.
Metaphors are also inspiring – have you ever thought about the interior design of your community spaces? Or who helps clean up after the party? Maybe your house looks great and everyone is comfortable there, but conversation has run dry and you wish you’d planned a game.
We hope we’ve piqued your interest – and to help you make the most of the house party metaphor for community engagement, we’ve packaged up our blog post essays, related resources, and reflection questions into a new CSCCE “concept booklet” that you can download for free. And if you have any feedback about the metaphor or you’d like to tell us how it’s inspired you, we’d love to hear from you: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Find out more about our upcoming trainings on: community engagement, creating playbooks, and planning for large-scale collaborations
Read a report from CSCCE and our collaborators on supporting environmental data science students at minority serving institutions
Explore the Bicycle Principles for short form trainings in STEM
Catch up on our recent series of open-source tools trials – GitHub, OpenReview, Bitergia, and more!
And mark your calendars:
On Wednesday, 13 December at 11am EST / 4pm UTC, CSCCE Director Lou Woodley and Director of Learning Camille Santistevan will be available on Zoom to answer any questions you might have about our professional development trainings.
Scientific Community Engagement Fundamentals (CEF)
Scientific Community Engagement Fundamentals is an eight-week course designed to offer new or existing community managers core frameworks and vocabulary to describe their community’s purpose, refine or create strategic programming to engage community members around their shared goals, and identify ways to lower barriers to member participation.
Playbooks or collaboration guides are written hubs that keep your community members, community champions, or community team on the same page by making visible the norms of your shared work. In this workshop-style course, we’ll talk about the different contexts in which playbooks are useful, different strategies for creating and maintaining them, and support participants as they create a “lite” playbook of their own.
Large-scale collaborations – a 2-part workshop series
Participants will explore dimensions of team readiness for large, multi-stakeholder collaborative initiatives and how a team readiness assessment can be used to identify the stage of their project and which areas they need to address as a priority. By the end of workshop 1, participants will have drafted a survey for their project, and be ready to determine how to translate the survey responses into practical next steps in the second workshop.
CSCCE’s Community Manager Certification Program builds upon CEF to create a longer-form, multi-component, online program for STEM community managers. The program equips community managers and their organizations with necessary skills and frameworks to ground their work in a community-centric leadership approach – and to signal those qualifications to others.
CSCCE collaborators publish report on supporting environmental data science students at minority serving institutions
In 2021/22, CSCCE collaborated with the Academic Data Science Alliance (ADSA), The Carpentries, the Atlanta University Center Data Science Initiative, the Native BioData Consortium, NEON, and the RIOS Institute on an NSF grant to explore ways of better supporting environmental data science students at Tribal Colleges and Universities (TCUs) and Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs).
The Bicycle Principles – CSCCE collaborators, community members, and staff consider short form training best practices
In a new publication, which came out in November in PLOS ONE, CSCCE community of practice member Jason Williams (Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory), Rochelle Trachtenberg (Georgetown University), and co-authors describe the Bicycle Principles for short form trainings in STEMM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math, and Medicine), as well as a series of recommendations for their successful implementation.
December’s Community Call: Join us for our annual community potluck!
Every year, we host an end-of-year virtual “potluck” for our community of practice. It’s an opportunity to reflect on the year’s successes, share some of the things we’ve learned over the past 12 months, and look ahead to what’s coming up after the holiday season. Since it’s a potluck, everyone is encouraged to “bring along a dish,” and in this blog post we have a few suggestions!
From late August through the end of October, thanks to funding from the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative we hosted a series of tools trials to explore open source tools that support community engagement. In these recap blog posts you can learn more about some of these tools and how they can be used.
Using GitHub to facilitate community activities
In the first Tools Trial in the series, we took a look at three use cases for how Github repositories can be used to facilitate community collaborations: How rOpenSci uses the platform to organize their monthly community calls, how Data Umbrella runs their community-engaged blog, and how The Turing Way use GitHub in a variety of ways to support their community activities.
Using GitHub and HedgeDoc to organize and support community events
For the second Tools Trial in our series focusing on open-source tools, we invited staff from The Carpentries to highlight some of the tools they use to support community events like CarpentryCon. We learned about the tool HedgeDoc, which supports collaborative note taking in markdown, as well as two different ways of setting up a GitHub repo (one to host a website, the other to solicit conference session proposals).
OpenReview is an open-source platform that supports open peer review, primarily for conference abstracts but with the ability to be customized and applied to other situations. OpenReview PI Andrew McCallum and Senior Software Engineer Melisa Bok joined us to share some history about the platform, along with a demo of some of its key features.
GitHub and Bitergia to support research and developer communities
For the fourth of our open-source Tools Trials, we took a closer look at some of the specific needs of research and developer communities, such as how to use GitHub to collaborate on technical documentation, how GitHub teams can support member management, and the kinds of user metrics Bitergia Analytics can gather so that you can stay informed about the health of your community activities.
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