OLS capacity building in open science with a peer led global and diverse community - Sam Haynes
From Nel Coleman
Open research offers a pathway to remove many of the obstacles inherent to the traditional research model. The cost of publishing, the lack of accessible data sets and the divide between academic knowledge and public knowledge continue to limit those who can actively participate in research. However, conducting open research itself requires knowledge of the available tools, infrastructure, and methodologies. Therefore, open research can only address the inequality in our knowledge systems by supporting and developing global communities of open researchers. Open Life Science (OLS) is a community-oriented non-profit organisation that promotes open, inclusive and equitable research .
OLS, which was incubated via the Mozilla Open Leaders initiative in 2019, and in 2022, is an internationally recognised training and mentoring platform to gather structured training and mentoring for academics, researchers, undergraduates, and other stakeholders working on participatory projects. For that, OLS provides resources, peer networks, and expert consulting to build open projects, establish/lead teams and become multipliers of open research in their networks. The essential requirement for joining this free program is a curiosity for open science and collaborative/ team research.
In this submission, we would like to discuss what capacity building in open science looks like by presenting our 16-week mentoring and training program [1,2]. As of 2022, OLS has 400+ community members across six continents and countries across the Global South and North and is currently supporting its seventh cohort. All participants - often teams and research groups - work on an open science project with guidance from dedicated mentors and experts from the community.
Secondly, we would like to share the current practices OLS developed to address inequities and increase sustainability, e.g., ensuring inclusive remote participation, sharing the recordings of the training calls and other educational resources, and narratives of the OLS grant applications with a wide audience [3,4].
Finally, we want to promote an open call for experts to join OLS. OLS projects are highly varied and benefit from a broad range of non-biological expertise, from programming to community engagement to conducting reproducible research. Whether you can commit to being a mentor for a full 16-week course or are willing to join our list of experts who can help answer domain-specific questions, we need you!
2. Open Life Science Community. Open Life Science - Training and Mentoring programme - Website release. Zenodo. (2021). https://doi.org/10.5281/zenodo.5636584 3. https://youtube.com/@OpenLifeSci 4. https://zenodo.org/communities/openlifesci/