OpenSpires Team Training Day

The project team and invited guests participated in a training day on Tuesday 8th September. This was a chance for the project team to update each other, to explain the project to some other colleagues at Oxford, and to brainstorm some key issues. Presentations included:

  • Overview – Podcasting Projects and OpenSpires
  • Introducing the OpenSpires Portal
  • Recording and Editing Content
  • Stakeholders and their Needs
  • OpenContent Literacy
  • Copyright at Oxford
  • Creative Commons and OpenSpires
  • JISC Steeple Project

One breakout session focussed on engaging with academics – Who? How? Why should they get involved? Although we already have lots of content in the pipeline this session was particularly helpful to get ideas and views from the attendees who are not part of the project team.
Some suggestions for ‘Who?’ included: make links with academics publishing books – podcasts could be seen as another marketing tool; target content which is unique to Oxford, for example conversations with Oxonians; look at major future events (futurology); target areas which could benefit from an increased profile, for example departments wishing to increase their recruitment to certain programmes.
Ideas for ‘How?’ included departmental road shows; linking with departments who already record podcasts for their own departmental use; running events for academics perhaps focussing on the technical aspects of recording to increase their skills and interest.
Understanding why an academic should get involved is key to effective engagement, and many reasons were suggested, particularly by invited guests: podcasting and in particular producing Open Content broadens their potential audience allowing them to share their ideas with the wider public; OpenSpires opens a window on their department and can only help to increase an academic’s profile.
Another breakout session involved attendees rehearsing a 30-second pitch for the project – how would you explain OpenSpires to someone you meet in an elevator? To close the day, the team focussed on the project deliverables to see where we are, what is still to do and to discuss what success will look like at the end of the project.

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