Research Capacity Development

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Research Capacity Development Programme at UB

Research capacity development is one of the most critical challenges facing higher education institutions, including the University of Botswana (UB). Growing the number and quality of our researchers is a strategic issue for us if we are to achieve our vision of becoming a research intensive university by 2021. For many academics, most of their “office hours” is spent on teaching and teaching-related activities such as preparation for lectures, marking, administration and consultation with students. This leads to very little time being available for research; yet research is an important element of a successful academic career and certainly one that receives intense evaluation during hiring, performance assessments and for promotions. Therefore, developing research capacity can potentially help to enhance a greater sense of academic fulfilment as well as advancement in the academic’s career.

The research capacity development programme at UB is primarily targeted at early career researchers and graduate students; although any academic at any stage is welcomed to attend. The programme involves a series of workshop with internal and external facilitators on a range of topics that may assist the researcher with either the attainment of their graduate degree, to begin their career as an independent researcher or to increase research output and externally funded grants. Regardless of the reason, career planning, mentorships, funding and skills development are core elements of the programme.

For further information regarding the programme, details about a specific workshop or to develop a specialized workshop, contact Jose Jackson-Malete on Tel: +267-355-2903 / 2900 or email: maletej@mopipi.ub.bw

Pre-award Internal Funding The objective of the pre-award internal funding workshop is to increase awareness about the guidelines for accessing internal funds, developing successful proposals for funding, the UB grant proposal submission process (Research Management system -RMS) and the peer review for evaluation.
Ethical conduct in research The main aim of the workshop is to sensitize those involved in research in how to maintain the highest standards of research integrity through lectures, case studies and group discussions on hot topics in (i) Authorship and Publication, (ii) Collaborative Research, (iii) Conflict of Interest, (iv) Data Ownership, Acquisition, Sharing, and Management, (v) Mentor-Trainee Relationships, (vi) Peer Review and (vii) Research Integrity
Roles and Responsibilities of Mentors and Mentees & Mentoring Activities The goal of the workshop is to improve understanding about what mentoring is (& is not), the roles and responsibilities of mentors and mentees, what each person can get out of the relationship and how mentoring adds value. In addition, some of the barriers to effective mentoring, the skills needed to be an effective mentor as well as how to recognize & deter relationship problems will also be discussed.
Grant Proposal Writing Workshop The workshop objective is to improve the competitiveness of proposals being submitted to external funding agencies including the support that can be provided by various UB offices will also be discussed. There will be a practical break-out session during which groups will be required to work through a concept note for submission to an agency.
Communicating Research

This workshop is designed to help researchers develop the necessary skills for effectively communicating the significance of their research, particularly outside the immediate environment of fellow-specialists in their own discipline or subject area. Some of the issues to be discussed include (i) Key skills for engaging non-specialists and getting their attention, (ii) What is significant about your research angle, and what difference will it make? And (iii) Finding the story in your research, and learning how to announce it.

Manuscript Publication Writeshop

The purpose of the Writing workshop is to provide academics with a better understanding of how to develop their research results into manuscripts for publication in peer reviewed journals. The approach will focus on using actual data or examples of submitted abstracts so as to understand how best to develop these into full-length manuscripts. Resources and helpful steps necessary to achieve a successful submission will be reviewed along with target journals.
Research Methods, Design, Supervision and Publications This workshop is targeted at graduate students and the objective is to strengthen their skills with the practical aspects of the research process, including understanding their roles and responsibilities in the supervision process and also how you should plan your publications from proposal to manuscripts.
Turning research into use – Policies, Innovations, Intellectual Property This workshop is designed to assist researchers develop the necessary skills for effectively commercialising all forms of intellectual property arising from research that is publicly funded, particularly given the investment in building research capacity in strategic areas, in human capital as well as in physical research infrastructure at UB. The key objective of this is to maximise the economic and societal benefits from investment in Research, in particular the creation of sustainable jobs and smart partnerships with industry.
Identifying Funding Opportunities The objective of this practical, hands-on workshop is to demonstrate how to access research funding opportunities in different disciplines using the databases  that UB subscribes to such as Research Africa, Community of Science, Foundations Online and others
Research and Publication Planning The objective of the workshop is to develop an understanding of how each stage of the research process should be planned and resourced.  Researchers will learn how to develop research targets that are based on one’s stage of research, relate the skill needs to targeted research outputs/milestones and analyze different research stages and be able to allocate the time required etc.
Managing Research Projects: Financial, HR and Transport Issues The workshop is aimed at creating awareness on how to effectively manage the resources available for their research projects including finances, human resources as well as transport during the project implementation stage. Examples from internally and externally funded projects will be used to demonstrate best practices.
Horizon 2020 This workshop will create awareness of the European Union (EU) new funding mechanism for research and innovation called Horizon 2020, which will run from 2014 to 2020. It will combine all research and innovation funding currently provided through the Framework Programmes (FP) for Research and Technical Development, the innovation related activities of the Competitiveness and Innovation Framework Programme and the European Institute of Innovation and Technology.
Post-award Internal Funding The objective of the post-award workshop is to provide researchers that have received internal funding with the procedures for successfully implementing their projects including identifying project risks, finalizing their workplans, budgets, ethical approval procedures and evaluation of the IP potential of their projects. In addition, the ORD technical and financial reporting procedures and closing out of a project will be discussed.
Contact Details :
Office of Research and Development