CSCCE Community Tools Trial 2.0 Recap: Virtual networking events

In late February, we relaunched our Community Tools Trials. This time around we’ve adjusted the format to provide the time and space to solve a specific challenge related to hosting online events each month, by pooling the diverse experiences and knowledge of the members of our community of practice. 

Our earlier tools trials, “Tools Trials 1.0,” took a methodical approach to testing a variety of events platforms, with a primary focus on how the tool worked and what kinds of events it would be suited to (you can read our recap blog posts here). This series, however, “Tools Trials 2.0,” is putting the specific use case first, and then figuring out a solution (or choice of solutions!) that is engaging, inclusive, and accessible. 

The first of the 2.0 series took place on 25 February 2021, and focused on virtual networking events. Community member Rachael Ainsworth of the Software Sustainability Institute wanted to test out an icebreaker idea with a sizable group, as well as have a larger discussion about what icebreakers work online, what platforms are out there, and how different users might experience the event. 

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CSCCE Tools Trials 2.0

In 2020, we conducted a series of virtual tools trials, to test out platforms and apps that help communities connect and work together online. Together with members of the CSCCE community of practice, we tested eight platforms, and recapped our findings on the CSCCE blog

This Spring, we are launching “Tools Trials 2.0.” Instead of focusing on a single platform, we’ll devote each monthly trial to discussing, and hopefully solving, a specific use case. We’ll then take what we learned and share it with the broader community. 

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November’s community call: Shaping the future of CSCCE programming

This month we spent our community call brainstorming ideas for CSCCE programming that meets the needs of scientific community managers who are facilitating online meetings, events, and conferences. We used Padlet boards to collect ideas, and these boards will remain open for a couple more weeks for any community members who were unable to join the call (read on for more information).

The November 2020 CSCCE Community Call. Image credit: CSCCE
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CSCCE Community Tools Trials Recap: Remo

For our fifth virtual tools trial, CSCCE community of practice member Mate Palfy shared his knowledge of the online conferencing platform Remo. In this blog post we offer a brief recap of the trial, and share our collaborative notes. 

What’s a CSCCE tools trial? It’s an opportunity to try out an online platform with a group of your fellow scientific community managers and see whether it might be useful for your community. We have summarized all of our previous trials on the blog so you can catch up: Qiqochat, Mural/Padlet/Jamboard, Gather, and Etherpad+Video. And, join us next week at noon US EDT for the next trial in the series, which will be networking tool Wonder (previously YoTribe). 

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CSCCE Community Tools Trial Recap: Etherpad+Video

Tools trial number four in our ongoing series took place on Thursday, 24 September. About a dozen members of our community of practice (request to join here) met to try out the new video chat integration on Etherpad, an open-source collaborative note-taking platform.

A big thank you to community member Malika Ihle, who co-hosted this trial and kindly shared her expertise and experience with Etherpad. 

Our previous trials covered Qiqochat, Mural/Jamboard/Padlet, and Gather. If you have any ideas or requests for future trials, or would like to co-host with us, let us know by emailing us: info@cscce.org.

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Online communities and communication tools

Many communities rely on online platforms and communication tools to stay connected and to host events. On this page we have highlighted several blog posts about building and sustaining communities online. We have also produced a guidebook, accompanying appendix, and other resources for how to get started building an engaging and inclusive community on Slack. We are working on additional resources about hosting successful virtual events.

Blog posts

Community manager experiences

From theory to practice

Guidebooks

Slack

Creating an engaging community on Slack

by Lou Woodley and Katie Pratt

May 6, 2020

This guidebook is intended for community managers, but may also serve others who are looking to build an inclusive and engaging online community in Slack.

Creating an engaging community on Slack – Appendix

by Lou Woodley and Katie Pratt

May 6, 2020

This appendix contains several resources to accompany our guidebook. It includes a Slack intentions worksheet, information about the "Invite bot," an example of a new member survey, an example of a weekly newsletter, and a pre-launch checklist.

Slack quick start guide

by Lou Woodley and Katie Pratt

April 23, 2020

This quick start guide is a brief technical orientation for Slack group members to help them to set up their profile and configure Slack notifications in a way that works for them.