On Thursday, 19th of March, we joined online with 26 members for the first virtual meeting to really kick-off the community activities.
The meeting started with a brief introduction of the SSHOC project and our training activities before explaining the goals we set for the community. We see the Training Community as a space for exchange for anyone interested in training for the Social Sciences and Humanities (SSH). While we are eager to identify local training nodes and experts in different countries to join, the community is open to anyone, from younger scholars with little experience to trainers with years of experience.
A quick mentimeter check told us that the members present at the call were quite experienced in providing face-to-face training and developing materials while our group showed less experience in providing training online. Given the current COVID-19-crisis, providing online training will surely become an important topic for the community to discuss further and exchange experiences.
Training scholars and assisting them in the development of training activities is one of the goals SSHOC set out for the Training Community. We will invite community members to contribute to the SSHOC Training Toolkit that will be released in April. The toolkit will be a searchable inventory covering different topics, such as RDM and Open Science, and various materials, including modules, slides, didactics, videos, and games that trainers can re-use and apply in their own training activities.
We will organize targeted (online) train-the-trainer bootcamps this year to further co-create and expand the toolkit. Bootcamps will also facilitate the exchange of best practices and help trainers to develop and improve their training activities.
During the kick-off call, members also expressed their wishes and explained why they joined the Training Community. Networking and exchanging knowledge and training materials were amongst the top reasons mentioned. People also wanted to tackle common problems together, for instance around data sharing and the use of digital tools.
While our community focuses on trainers within the SSH domain, we can learn a lot from other initiatives like the OpenAIRE Community of Practice for training coordinators, which we plan to liaise with in the future. While the COVID-19-crisis persists, the SSHOC Training Community will continue with virtual meetings and online activities and stay connected through our community mailing list.