‘Sharing experiences about open research’

| Stan Waning

The recently established Open Science Community Twente gave a kick-off last week. From professors to students: anyone can join. 'Gladly even,' says UT researcher and organizer Markus Konkol.

Over thirty participants watched online last Thursday as Konkol explained what the Open Science Community Twente stands for. Why it is so important that research is open and transparent. In Sweden, Ireland and nine other Dutch cities, people have already come together to spar about this topic, but recently this has also happened in Twente.

What exactly does the community entail?

Konkol: ‘We are a bottom-up community. Anyone interested in open research can apply. So we are not only there for researchers or professors. If you are only interested in open research, you are already welcome. The only requirement is that you are open-minded. By being interdisciplinary, we can better share experiences. That's what we want to do through webinars, workshops and events.'

Why is open research so important to you?

'Transparent and open means that a researcher also shares his entire research. And as far as possible also his data. For the verification of research, the text alone is not enough. In open research it is possible, for example, to see how the data has been filtered and cleaned. In addition, making research transparent is important for new research. Then as a researcher you want to have insight into the overall picture.'

What is the purpose of the community?

'To bring people together who like to share experiences about open research. The tradition is that research is often quite closed. We want to change that, by talking about good and bad experiences. Making research transparent in not easy, but by talking about it with each other we make it more accessible.'

What did the kick-off look like last week?

'Because of the Coronacrisis, of course, it was completely online. That makes it difficult, especially since we've only just started. I can't even put up a poster on campus, because nobody sees it anyway. Over thirty people had signed up. That's a nice start, but we want to get much bigger. At other universities the community consists of hundreds of participants. We want to go that way too. During the kick-off I gave a presentation, but participants also contributed ideas. The next meeting is scheduled for February 25 at 14:00. We will discuss the benefits and limitations of pre-registrations. Those who are interested can register with us.'

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