Because good research needs good data

RDMF: unconference

09 April 2019 |

The RDMF is returning - unconference style! Hot on the heels of a trial at IDCC in Melbourne, we're bringing an unconference to the UK community. The unconference will provide a space to discuss challenges and share lessons on providing research data support.  

The idea of the unstructured format is to allow the attendees to shape the programme based on their interests and needs. You can run group discussions, work together on creating common resources, provide tutorials and share the issues you are facing in a safe space. We'll collate ideas in advance and begin with pitches to create a programme.

You can see more about the IDCC unconference on our website.

A basic event programme is provided below, which will be updated at the event. In light of feeback we have gone for multiple 45 minutes sessions. 

Time  Session
12:30 Lunch & registration
13:30 Welcome and initial pitches
13:45 Upskilling people for RDM one step at a time Balancing data sharing and GDPR
14:30 Quick summary and transition
14:40 Biggest challenges of institutional RDM support From RDM to reproductible research
15:25 Quick summary and transition
15:30 Coffee
15:50 Finding links between research papers and research data deposited in other repositories using OpenAIRE Scholix API The role of institutions in the European Open Science Cloud (EOSC)
16:35 Reconvene & feedback
16:45 Wrap-up & close


You can start suggesting topics in the googledoc. Browse the session types below for inspiration of the kind of structure you would like to adopt. 

All session notes and documents are in the googledrive folder.

We ask attendees to share the main outcome of each session in a short tweet to #RDMFunconf 

Get your thinking caps on about issues to solve, come along and join in!

Potential session types 

Below are some ideas for types of sessions, but this list is not exhaustive, and you are free to decide what works best for you.

  • Group Discussion: Pick a topic you’re interested in and form a discussion around it. If you loved a talk at the conference, perhaps propose further discussion on the topic it addressed.
  • Learn about, or how to do X: If you’re inclined to teach, just make sure you bring whatever gear you need, and that you have some plan for teaching 5, 10 or 15 people how to do something all at the same time.
  • Show and tell: You have a cool project, a demo, or just something to show and let people play with that is the springboard for all the conversation in the session. Alternatively, you can invite others to bring their own items to show and tell (perhaps with a theme), and everyone takes a turn sharing.
  • Fishbowl Dialogues: This format can be used to explore a particular question or set of questions.

The basic idea is that a centre group engages in a discussion (circle of 5-8 chairs in the centre), while an outer group listens (there will rows of chairs radiating out for the centre).

Those in the centre circle can either be selected or volunteer from the group. You may want to start out with a group comprised of people with different opinions on a topic, or different areas of experience. Or you can let the group form as it will.

In most Fish Bowl Dialogues, there is one chair left empty in the centre circle. This chair is open for someone else to step into. When someone steps into the empty chair one of the existing centre circle people should self-select and step out so there is always one empty chair.

  • Knowledge café: This form can also be used to explore a question or set of questions. The knowledge café begins with the participants seated in a circle of chairs (or concentric circles of chairs if the group is large or the room is small). The facilitator introduces the café topic and poses one or two key open-ended questions.

Then, the group breaks into small groups, with about five people in each group. Each small group discusses the questions for about 45 minutes. The small group discussions are not led by a facilitator, and no summary of the discussion is captured for subsequent feedback to the large group.

Participants then return to the circle and the facilitator leads the group through the final 45-minute session, in which people reflect on the small group discussions and share any thoughts, insights and ideas on the topic that may have emerged. A knowledge café is most effective with between 15 and 50 participants – about thirty is ideal.


Costs and Registration

Registration costs £50 and is now open

You can register for the fulll day event (DMPonline workshop & RDMF unconference) for the reduced price of £120.