IG Early Career and Engagement

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26 Jan 2021
Group(s) submitting the application: 
Meeting objectives: 

The objectives of the meeting are to:

  • Spread awareness about the ECEIG Mentoring Programme, which is a core activity of the group

  • Attract early-career participants of RDA P16

  • Search for new co-chairs

  • Enhance the group of mentors and mentees

  • Enhance participation from other regions (except EU, which currently comprises the majority of the ECEIG network)

  • Setup ECEIG Task Forces to complement the Mentoring Programme

  • Encourage everyone to actively get involved with the TFs’ activities

  • Search for new ideas about TF’s activities

  • Facilitate networking and research promotion of individuals in a flash-talk segment

  • Understand participants’ needs and consult about potential training and professional development activities

  • Plan for causal interaction amongst current and prospective ECEIG members in the form of a social online event.


Meetin Agenda:

Collaborative Notes:



Meeting agenda: 
  1. Welcome and Introduction

  2. Short presentation about the group and its objectives, focusing on the Mentoring Programme

  3. ECEIG Mentoring Programme

  4. Presenting the AMA calls

    1. AMAs so far

    2. Capture new topics of interest for 2021-2022

  5. Thinking about new activities

  6. The floor is yours! - flash talks segment of participants poster presentations and research interests communication

  7. How to engage

  8. Closing & Next Steps

Target Audience: 

This meeting is aimed at members of the ECEIG and those who are interested in joining the group and RDA in general. The session will be of particular interest to Researchers and Professionals in the Early and Mid-Career stages as well as to more experienced RDA members who desire to mentor and support Early and Mid-Career Researchers and Professionals. The ECEIG focuses on the active role of the members and the communication between them.

Please sign up to join the IG before, during or after the meeting to stay informed of efforts and advancements of this group

Group chair serving as contact person: 
Brief introduction describing the activities and scope of the group: 

The purpose of the Early Career and Engagement Interest Group (ECEIG) is to provide a focal point for Early and Mid-Career Researchers and Professionals, including those involved in various RDA-related fellowships and Early Career programs.

RDA members recognized that there is a need to create a space in RDA for those who are at the beginning stages of their careers. Specifically, that Early Career Researchers and Professionals usually need additional support for: (a) networking amongst themselves to learn about other Early Career scientists and their research, i.e., establishing a “network of peers”, and (b) receiving mentorship from senior RDA members who are interested in mentoring Early Career Researchers and Professionals.


Designating time on each RDA plenary schedule for this IG is important to recognize and develop the means which will effectively support this “next generation of RDA”, who is equipped with unique talents and strengths, impacting the future of RDA in their own way. Additionally, this is an opportunity for RDA to act proactively by building a strong network of mentors who lead on data mentorship within and outside the RDA.


For that, the ECEIG has developed a Mentoring Programme that calls people to join either as mentors or as mentees or in some cases both, according to their needs, willingness and  time restrictions. The Mentoring Programme was initially based on monthly teleconferences where representatives from both channels (mentors and mentees) could connect and discuss challenges faced regarding current research endeavours, seek collaboration, and get a better understanding of specific aspects of Research Data Management in other contexts, countries and continents besides where they are located. These teleconferences are known as Ask-Me-Anything calls or AMA calls and though they proved to be engaging, they were still lacking in structure. That is why since October 2018 the AMAs became more subject-specific. By now, Open and FAIR data topics that have been addressed by guest speakers and experts presentations include: Research credit and recognition; Text mining; Best Practices on Open Source Software; Machine Learning, etc.. In order to enrich the Mentoring Programme with added-value activities that cover other important areas that early career researchers and practitioners may need guidance or advice on the ongoing Task Forces (TFs):

a. Mentoring Programme - organising and running AMAs (monthly activity), contacting mentors/mentees, communicating news through ECEIG social channels; potentially also work on a case study about mentoring programmes.


The ECEIG is searching for new TFs that the members could propose and actively involve. The proposed TFs have to be interesting for the Early Careers in order to gain skills from the mentors.

Short Group Status: 

At a BoF conducted during RDA P8 in Denver, CO a group of Early Career fellows agreed to explore the idea of creating an IG centering on those who are in the early stages of their careers and helping them effectively engage with RDA.  This effort was continued and crystallized at a dedicated networking session during RDA P9 in Barcelona, Spain, leading to the first kick-off meeting of the official ECEIG in RDA P10 in Montreal. Hearing the different needs and expectations of members of the ECEIG community, P11 in Berlin was a stepping stone and the place where a dedicated RDA Mentoring Programme was launched. Finally, the P12, P13 & P14 sessions in Botswana, Philadelphia and Helsinki respectively, led to broader, more diverse engagement with early career researchers, fellows and data experts awarded grants for participation in the RDA meetings contributing to the group activities growth. The latest Plenary meeting, P15, which eventually ran as a virtual event, provided the opportunity to interact with more participants in two sessions organised by the IG so as to accommodate more time zones. Overall, the ECEIG activities have gained more attention by other organisations and initiatives that share common goals in supporting early career researchers and have created links, mostly through AMAs, with FORCE11, CODATA, Software Heritage Archive, Open Life Science and OpenAIRE.

Type of Meeting: 
Working meeting
Avoid conflict with the following group (1): 
Avoid conflict with the following group (2): 
Meeting presenters: 
The group co-chairs and participants (flash talks)