Research management Training

Research management training – Overview

Introduction

Human Rights & Science (HR&S) recognises researchers, innovators, and entrepreneurs in lower-income countries who present amazing social business ideas and supports them. We offer to support the facilitation of an enabling environment.

HR&S research management workshops bring together scientific researchers, scientific institution management, users of scientific findings, innovators, and social entrepreneurs from Sub-Sahara Africa for lectures and discussions with the aim of providing opportunities for them to bring positive change and development. HR&S offers a transformational training package designed to inspire scientific stakeholders to become innovative change-makers. Scientific researchers are expected to develop creative capacity and acquire necessary skills to do research and implement research findings.

Structure

HR&S training events are stuctured around evaluation planning. Evaluation planning describes how we monitor and evaluate the way we address our activities, as well as how we intend to use evaluation results for activity improvement and decision making.  HR&S benefits from our own “Real-time Outcome Planning & Evaluation” tool (ROPE) and the training sessions are structured around the ROPE Strategy for Change. It is obvious from the above that ROPE is an iterative process and that the Strategy for Change is continiously revised, as a result of lessons learned. 

The set-up is two-fold; each researcher’s and technician’s own career and work plan ambitions combined with the ambitions of the management of the institution where the researcher / technician work.

HR&S trainings are instructor led and delivered by using a blended learning approach. It combines presentations, guided sessions of practical exercise, group work and home work.

Output

  1. One Output from the training events are a ROPE Strategy for Change road-map. The SfC road-map supports the development work of the participants and institution in parallel with and after the training is completed.
  2. Upon successful completion of the training and individual presentation, participants will be issued with a certificate.

Expected Outcome

Increased number of:

  • Approved research grant application.
  • Submitted manuscripts approved for publication.
  • Implemented research findings.
  • Income to the researchers and the university through consultancy.

Topics

Access to

  1. Well functioning computers & internet.
  2. Scientific literature.
  3. Well-functioning advanced scientific equipment.

Knowledge about

  1. The scientific method.
  2. Litterature reviews.
  3. Scientific supervision.
  4. Scientific writing.

Coordination around

  1. State-of-the-art knowledge.
  2. Seeking research grants.
  3. Developing and submitting manuscripts for publication.
  4. Dissemination of results to the non-scientific community.

Empowering

  1. Teamwork.
  2. Net-working.
  3. Knowledge-sharing.
  4. Time-management.

Strengthening institutional capacity

  1. Strategy for change.
  2. Sustainable economy.
  3. Accounting.
  4. Stakeholder analysis.
  5. Evaluation planning.
  6. Service and maintenance of scientific equipment..

Sharing about Practical strategies

  1. Ethical and management principles.
  2. Trust, transparency, and accountability.
  3. Cross-cultural understanding.
  4. Real-time outcome planning and evaluation.
  5. Physical infrastructure, financial support, coaching.
  6. Testing the strength of scientific evidence for impact.

Action Areas

  1. RISE Support Centres
  2. Investment capital loans
  3. Accountability management
  4. Branding & Public relations
  5. Motivation
  6. Social enterprise management
  7. Impact assessment

Offer

Institutions are welcome to request training packages

Training events usually starts with an introduction at an HR&S RISE Centre, continues with eight hours online workshops managed from HR&S Sweden and ends with 2 hours session with presentation by each participant at the HR&S RISE Centres.

Participants receives homework to be addresses in-between the online sessions. Each participant prepares a presentation to share during the last session. Good presentations are rewarded with certificates.

Accreditation

Upon successful completion of the training, participants will be issued with a certificate.

Attendance

Delegates should be proficient in English.
Each open course is open for 40 participants.

Eligibility

Staff and students connected to scentific institutions.

Date & venue

As agreed.

Price & payment

The institution pay for the training event according to the HR&S price list.
In addition, the fee for attending one webinar for participants that are not paid for by the institution, is Euro 10 per student and EUR 20 per employee, that do not belong to the insitution paying for the event.
(Please, transfer the fee to HR&S RISE Centres different bank accounts before the commencement of the training. Send proof of payment through email also to the RISE Centre. )

You are welcome to contact us

Email: info@humanrightsandscience.se

Thematic training – the Scientific method

Webinar targeting
Network members researcher & technicians

Training offered by Dr. Krisha MURTHY from India,
HR&S Senior Expert Adviser. 
https://www.linkedin.com/in/v-krishna-murthy-25bb6a12/

Dr. MURTHY offers a module of teaching RESEARCH METHODOLOGY developed to help a science/engineering student to get initiated into a scientific research path.

Content

The module is of 10 hours lectures, followed by a 2 hour examination session. It is on-line through zoom.
The module is developed into a interactive-participatory nature. Dr. Krishna usually offers workshops on-site and sates that it may be a little difficult to give hands-on exercises and mentor, online. So, he will try theory and profuse interactions – questions and answers so that we could know how well the participants learn.

Topic – The scientific method

The scientific method is a process for experimentation that is used to explore observations and answer questions. The basic steps of the scientific method are: make an observation that describes a problem, create a hypothesis, test the hypothesis, and draw conclusions and refine the hypothesis.

 

Steps

1. Ask a Question:The scientific method starts when we ask a question about something that we observe: How, What, When, Who, Which, Why, or Where? The question shall be something that we can measure.
2. Do Background Research: A literature review provides the necessary infromation on the best way to do things and ensure that we do not repeat mistakes from the past.
3. Construct a Hypothesis:A hypothesis is an educated guess about how things work. It is an attempt to answer our question with an explanation that can be tested. A hypothesis allows us to then make a prediction: “If _____[I do this] _____, then _____[this]_____ will happen.” We  state both your hypothesis and the resulting prediction we will be testing. Predictions must be easy to measure.
4. Test our hypothesis by doing an experiment:Our experiment tests whether our prediction is accurate and thus if our hypothesis is supported or not. It is important for our experiment to be a fair test. We conduct a fair test by making sure that we change only one variabl at a time while keeping all other conditions the same.We repeat our experiments several times to make sure to receive the same results every time. 5. Analyze our Data and Draw a Conclusion: Once our experiment is complete, we collect our measurements and analyse them to assess wether they support our hypothesis or not.We often find that our predictions were not accurate and that our hypothesis was not supported, and in such cases we shall communicate the results of of experiment and then go back and construct a new hypothesis and prediction based on the information we learned during their experiment. This starts much of the process of the scientific method over again. Also if we find that our hypothesis was supported, wemay want to test it again in a new manner.
6. Communicate our results: To complete our project we shall communicate our results to others by publishing our findings in a scientific journal or by presenting poster or talk at a scientific meeting. Other scientists are interested in our findings regardless of whether or not they support our original hypothesis. 

Please note

  1. Critical thinking is a key component of the scientific method. Without it, we cannot use logic to come to conclusions.
  2. When direct experimentation is not possible, scientists modify the scientific method. But also when modified, the goal remains the same: to discover cause and effect relationships by asking questions, carefully gathering and examining the evidence, and seeing if all the available information can be combined in to a logical answer.
  3. We describe the scientific method as a series of steps, but new information or thinking might cause a scientist to back up and repeat steps at any point during the process. A process like the scientific method that involves such backing up and repeating is called an iterative process.

Participants

The webinar is open for Researchers and technicians who intend to learn the basics of research methodology could benefit from the lectures. The training targets students/Ph.D. scholars or even newly recruited teachers at professional degree/diploma level.  We also welcome technicians who intend to learn the basics of research methodology.

Accreditation

Upon successful completion of the training, participants will be issued with a certificate.

Attendance

Delegates should be proficient in English.
Delegates have had to ensure they benefit from stable and powerful internet connections.
Each open course attracts up to 50 participants.

Eligibility

Staff and students connected to scentific institutions.
Participants must have attended previous HR&S trainings and be active members of a network.

Examination

Last day. 5 min presentation per participants. Share your hypethosis, literature review, your research plan, statistical method, budget. Plus questions by Prof. MURTHY.

WAPP: number. Create a group.

USE the video / have good enough connection

The group must be homogenous.

Date & venue

The webinars are given on demand.
Next occation is October 2021.
18-29 October; Monday, Wednesday, Friday, two hours per day during five days.
Total 12 hours; 10 hours lecture and 2 hours examination at the end.
1-3 pm Burkina Faso, Togolese, Liberian time
2-4 pm Nigerian time
3-5 pm Swedish, Zambian, Rwandan time
4-6 pm Kenyan, Ugandan time
7-9 pm Indian time

Price & payment

The fee for attending an open workshop series is EUR 10 per student and EUR 20 per employee.
Please, transfer the fee to HR&S RISE Centres different bank accounts before the commencement of the training. Send proof of payment through email also to the RISE Centre. 

You are welcome to contact us

Email: info@humanrightsandscience.se

Other – planning phase

Two hour sessions, with a 10 min break in the middle.
 If we want 10 hour lectures and I propose a two hour session for the exams (12 hours thus 6 days). Do we want maybe three days during two weeks, or maybe two days during three weeks.
It is planned for October, good?
It is open for Researchers and Technicians.
Which time of the day? In the previous evaluation by Millicent the participants complained and said they wanted to be able to choose themselves the time of the day.
Shall we make a survey then?
We need to ask the participants to ensure they have good internet, otherwise it is really really difficult for the presenter. They also have to be present as much as they possibly can and tell in advance if they will not attend. Dr Krishna is doing this free of charge and we have to show him respect.
In the previous evaluation the participants also wanted more than one presenter. Now this is difficult to match, as people offer to give webinars on a volunteer basis.
Who among the team-leaders that would like to be part of the coordination and maybe also support during the webinars.
Q to ask – How do we reach out? The two networks and then? We shall invove the PR people.

tailor-made Trainings

Our trainings are structured around on-line webinars managed from HR&S Sweden.

Our tailor-made trainings are designed according to the request by the customer. Among the different options are:

  1. The training can address  research management or laboratory management, or both.
  2. The training can be in the format of seminars, or workshops or both.
  3. It may start  with an introduction at an HR&S RISE Centre and end with presentation by each participant at the HR&S RISE Centres, or one of these options or none.
  4. It can contain a certain amount of information combined with a test, and then generate a certificate for the participansts that manage the requirements.
  5. It can be held condenced during one week, or be spread out over a period of maximum three months.
  6. The number of webinars can range between five up to twenty. Each shall be one, two, three or four hours. Participants receives homework to be addresses in-between the online sessions.

Accreditation

Upon successful completion of the training and individual presentation, participants will be issued with a certificate.

Attendance

Delegates should be proficient in English.
Each course preferably attracts around 20 participants.

Eligibility

Staff and students connected to scentific institutions.

Venue

The workshops will be held online and possibly on-site at our HR&S RISE Centres.

Price & payment

The cost for one series of tailor-made training is agreed on from case to case. The institution pays on average Euro 5,000 for ten hour training.

You are welcome to contact us

Email: info@humanrightsandscience.se

Workshop reports

Webinar February 2021
Report by Millicent SIFUNA
(with comments by Cecilia ÖMAN)

Workshop Summary
This report summarises the February 2021 webinar hosted jointly by HR&S Sweden and HR&S RISE Support Centre Kenya. The training was given online by HR&S Sweden and was supported and coordinated locally by HR&S RISE Support Centre Kenya.  Early career researchers and postgraduate students from Kenya attended. HR&S Support Centres from other countries were also in attendance. The workshop aimed to support scientific institutions and researchers in the generation, dissemination, and implementation of scientific findings. A  participant-centered approach was used because the researchers were better positioned to identify existing weaknesses, strengths, and the need for change. We invited participants to plan an overview presentation outlining their goals and challenges and a strategy for addressing them.
The workshop focused on the necessary conditions to bring about change. The participants compiled ambitions and related challenges. We worked with the participants and agreed on strategies for addressing the challenges. We gathered different activities that we projected to lead to an expected impact. The participants thus covered a spectrum of the HR&S Strategy for Change (SfC) and advisory areas (Annex 3). At the end of the training, participants developed an HR&S Strategy for Change (SfC) drawn from individual commitments to implement the training for a change. HR&S RISE Support Centre Kenya prepared the report for circulation to participants. The information is also intended as a resource for those interested in the workshop content but could not attend.

Background
Human Rights & Science brings together scientific researchers, technicians, scientific institution management, users of scientific findings, innovators, and social entrepreneurs from Sub-Sahara Africa for lectures and discussions to provide opportunities for them to bring positive change and development.  Research management consists of any action that an institution can take to improve the effectiveness of its researchers, but which is not part of the research process itself.
Africa faces some of the world’s most pressing health and development issues, but its scientific capacity is insufficient to address them. We agree that research should operate in an atmosphere that encourages researchers to concentrate on their work, which is only possible by organisations with good research management. Then, using our HR&S SfC tool, we develop systemic methods to develop research management systems in these areas further, building on existing initiatives.
We strongly believe that organizations should drive them in these regions for these efforts to be meaningful and sustainable. But we also want our efforts to be collaborative, putting together best practices and experiences from around the world. Therefore, we hope that research agencies, individual research managers and the private sector from all over the world will be interested in joining us. 

Objectives
The overall purpose of the workshop was to support scientific researchers and institutions with generating, disseminating, and implementing scientific findings. Also, forge closer collaborative links among researchers and provide space to engage with peers to discuss challenges, share ideas, and capture lessons learned.
The specific objectives were to: i) Explore options for raising our ambitions and profile as a group, and agree on an action plan for the research development in Kenya and other Sub-Sahara African countries. ii) Adopt the HR&S Strategy for Change tool (SfC) in plan implementation for institutions and individual researchers.

Date and venue
The training workshop took place 22-26 February 2021 online (zoom).

Training team
Cecilia ÖMAN, the CEO, HR&S Sweden, delivered the workshop with the support of HR&S Support Centre team members from Kenya, Nigeria, and Uganda.

Agenda
The training team agreed on a draft plan before the workshop (attached as annex), which the participants approved.

Participants
Twenty (20) participants from Kenya attended the training workshop. These were early career researchers and postgraduate students from three different universities; the University of Nairobi, Jomo Kenyatta University of Science and Technology, and the University of Eldoret. We have attached the list of participants as annex 4. Each participant introduced himself/herself. We set ground rules, participants outlined their expectations and shared. We shared the workshop schedule (Annex 2). We also shared an assessment of participant’s ambitions and challenges. See Annex 5 for compiled responses. These formed a significant part of the training.

The training- workshop
Ms. Millicent SIFUNA, team-leader at HR&S Support Centre Kenya opened the session by welcoming the participants, asking participants and trainers to introduce themselves, and establishing the ground rules. She clearly outlined the expectations from the workshop. The organisation of the workshop, she said, resulted from HR&S offering to present their own, unique and innovative tools ROPE (Real-time, Outcome Planning & Evaluation) and SfC (Strategy for Change) for capacity building and improvement in research infrastructure across institutions. The workshop facilitated interactions among participants. Participants were requested to ask any questions and outline their expectations from the workshop. Describing the methodology for this session, she explained that the current workshop had been structured around evaluation planning. Evaluation planning, she said, explains how we monitor and evaluate how we address our activities and how we intend to use evaluation results for activity improvement and decision-making. Participants introduced themselves and described their current responsibilities and expectations briefly from the workshop. We conducted the workshop in English. Cecilia ÖMAN proceeded with introducing the Strategy for Change (SfC) to participants. She talked about change an carefully explained the different elements of the Strategy for Change. Her sessions lasted nine hours, three days with three hours per day. Each participant was able to outline his/her challenges and ambitions. We discussed these in interactive sessions.

Challenges
Some participants had serious network issues thus could not attend the workshop consistently.

Conclusion
The participants appreciated the programme. Most participants had never attended such type of training.  Participants were enthusiastic about putting what they had learned into practice. Each participant who managed a 10-hour training and presented a SfC that they had developed for their ouw situation, received a certificate.

Recommendation
Participants indicated the following as some of the general workshop recommendations:

  • Need for more workshops.
  • A little shorter; perhaps a 2hrs per day workshop would have been suitable.
  • More speakers. Participant comment “The workshop could have involved more than one presenter in guiding the participants through discussion topics that the participants could gain more than one point of view of explanation.” “Maybe we could have more facilitators.”

Evaluation of the training
Lastly, each participant evaluated the training session, and the details are in annex 1. The evaluation aimed to get participants’ views on training and their recommendations for future training. There were four questions in which question 1 asked participants to provide the impact of the training while question 2 requested participants to cite limitations of the training, and question 3 asked for changes that we could adopt for similar training in the future. Question 4 invited participants to rate the training. We collected ten evaluation reports at the end of the training. Based on the responses from various questions, participants stated the following strength of the training;

  • Most participants stated that the methodology was very interactive with a lot of practicum, which enabled full participation and grasping of the content. They noted that the approach was an “eye-opener” on their shortfalls. The reflection encouraged them to apply what they had learned.
  • Various participants also mentioned that it was great networking with other participants.
  • The lectures and group discussions were at par.
  • Some echoed that the workshop helped them get more explicit guidelines on planning and carrying out a research project.

Although most respondents stated that we conducted the workshop well, however, some challenges constituted the weakness attributable to the training. Some participants expressed dissatisfaction in a sense that;

  • The number of participants could have been more. One comment was that “it would be interesting if HR&S increases the number of participants so that more people can benefit from such an eye-opening workshop.”
  • Participants should be involved in deciding the best time that suits them.

We asked the participants to suggest changes that could be cooperated in the future when conducting similar training. The following were some of the suggestions that;

  • “We should reduce the number of training hours per day and days increased to ensure thorough delivery of the content.”

Comments by Cecilia on the evaluation statements from the participants
The webinar was generously offered free of charge by HR&S CEO Cecilia ÖMAN, for the purpose of sharing knowledge about the HR&S tools. HR&S is a social entreprise and not an aid insitutions and thus does not receive aid donations. The HR&S ambition is to encourage academic institutions to request and pay for such training in the future.  We still requested each participants to pay EUR 10 and the fee was transferred to the HR&S Support Centre in Kenya in order to contribute small to the running costs of the Centre. The reason for asking for a small fee was, besides to contribute to costs, to filter out only the serious participants. The webinar was open and the maximum number was considered doable for an efficient webinar was around 40, but only 20 signed up. It will be difficult to convince other speakers to plan, implement and follow-up 10 webinars, free of charge, but a soon as the academic institutions agree to cover costs, more facilitators will be invited.

ANNEX 1: Evaluation form

  1. What was most effective to you about the workshop?
  2. What was least effective to you about the workshop?
  3. Any suggestions for change you would like about the current workshop?
  4. Overall, how would you rate the workshop?  Excellent, Very good, Good, Fair, Poor.

ANNEX 2: Research Management workshop schedule

Programme

Date

Time

One hour introduction with HR&S RISE Kenya

Tuesday, 23rd Feb.

6.00-7.00 p.m.

Nine-hour online training with HR&S Sweden (3 days)

Wednesday, 24th Feb.

4.00-7.00 p.m.

Thursday, 25th 

4.00-7.00 p.m.

Friday, 26th                        

2.00-5.00 p.m.

One hour examination with HR&S Kenya

Friday, 26th

6.00-7.00 p.m.

Workshop evaluation

Friday, 26th

7.00-7:10 pm

Distribution of certificates (via email)

 

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