Computational Research and Open Science Community Mentorship Indaba

On 15 April, ESCALATOR will host a discussion session bringing together experienced mentorship programme practitioners to share operational knowledge. The focus will be on community organised mentorship programmes for researchers rather than institutional/organisational initiatives.

The ESCALATOR programme aims to grow an active and inclusive community of practice in digital research practices in Humanities and Social Sciences in South Africa. The programme is developed by the South African Centre for Digital Language Resources (SADiLaR) which forms part of the South African Research Infrastructure Roadmap initiative of the Department of Science and Innovation.

The Digital Champions Initiative (DCI) is a flagstone project within ESCALATOR. Through the DCI, participants will have access to a mentorship programme that will foster digital and computational research skills in these fields through training and network building. The initiative will be open to researchers and research support staff working in the fields of Humanities or Social Sciences at all public universities in South Africa.

Over the past few years several academic and professional communities have set out to develop mentorship programmes in the fields of open science, open education, and data science. Despite these wide-ranging initiatives there is currently no community of practice around the development of community mentorship programmes.

The Computational Research and Open Science Community Mentorship Indaba taking place on 15 April 2021 will consist of short presentations by representatives from eight mentorship initiatives, interspersed with discussions focussed on the following:

  • Programme content/mentee projects
  • Pairing mentors/mentees
  • Mentor recruitment/reward/support
  • Measuring impact
  • Post programme support

Summaries from the session will be converted to a “Ten simple rules” paper and submitted to the Education section of PLoS Computational Biology. The journal has published over 1000 articles of this kind focusing on professional development in academia since 2005.

A blog post will also appear on the ESCALATOR website and participants are encouraged to publish or otherwise share their experiences, for instance, on other social media platforms to ensure the collective knowledge are widely disseminated.

Participants from the following initiatives will be participating in the online event:

For more information please contact