So today marks the upload of Thing 12 of my 23 Research Things programme which means we’re over halfway through.
I was going to blog about the programme on a weekly basis but then life and work got in the way so hey. So far I think the programme is going pretty well. I think we have a lot of ‘lurkers’ in that there are many people out there looking at the programme blog, following the blog and watching the content even if they aren’t engaging through actively blogging about the programme. And that’s ok. I don’t really mind how people interact with the content that I’ve put online, just that they do in some way.
But of those that are actively getting involved, I have had 17 individual people message me and let me know that they’re blogging along with the programme. Of those people, some are keeping up and being really regular, some are following at their own pace and a few seem to have stopped entirely but I hope they’ll be able to pick up where they left off and keep getting something out of the programme.
My favourite Thing so far has been Thing 10 where I recorded a podcast with Ryan Cronin about communicating complex ideas to non-expert audiences. It was a really interesting discussion and even more pertinent given the state of affairs in our political and social worlds at the moment, especially when it comes to misinformation and distrust of experts. Check out the podcast if you haven’t already.
In addition to the online programme, I have been running new teaching sessions at the Moore Library which have been fairly well attended so far with a mix of students and researchers coming in from different STEM disciplines. It will take time to build on these initial few sessions but all in all I think they’ve gone well so far and I’ve been able to follow up on things with participants after the sessions themselves.
So far the programme has been fairly easy to maintain and that’s mostly because I did a ton of work throughout the summer to preload as much content as possible so everything posts automatically and I can spend my time checking in on participants’ blogs and promoting each Thing when it launches. This all takes time and planning of course but it is doable alongside my other responsibilities.
I hope that as many of the current participants as possible complete the programme as it would be nice to see them finish and enjoy getting to the end. If some don’t but they still enjoyed what they did, then that is fine too. Nothing is wasted. I also hope that people are inspired by the programme to do similar things in their institutions. I’m getting a lot of traffic from around the world so people are obviously interested in what I’m doing which is quite nice. If you are one of those people and have any questions, please do not hesitate to get in touch!
There’s some fun stuff coming up in the programme and in the Real World, some of the Things that I have covered have sparked conversations with researchers and have opened doors to running new teaching sessions and getting guest speakers in to build on interests sparked in my immediate communities which is ace.
So, here’s to the next few Things!