Building your online network
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Presentation for early career researchers in the Humanities as part of the Researcher Online Series of workshops

Presentation for early career researchers in the Humanities as part of the Researcher Online Series of workshops

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  • Aims for this session - links to RO1 - building an identity and profile as a more static activity, putting information out there. Not broadcasting, one to many, but participatory, many to many.\n
  • If you don’t have a wifi connection or Twitter account, we’ll use post-its\n
  • Note any objections, stress hashtag\n
  • This course isn’t about teaching you the tools, but about exploring the possibilities offered by the digital, networked and open space of the internet and how they might enhance the kinds of things you might want to do online.\nI don’t necessarily want to be evangelical about tools or even being online - I want you to come to an informed decision about the level of engagement which you feel is comfortable and appropriate.\nI can’t give you answers, hence there will be discussion in this session.\n
  • This course isn’t about teaching you the tools, but about exploring the possibilities offered by the digital, networked and open space of the internet and how they might enhance the kinds of things you might want to do online.\nI don’t necessarily want to be evangelical about tools or even being online - I want you to come to an informed decision about the level of engagement which you feel is comfortable and appropriate.\nI can’t give you answers, hence there will be discussion in this session.\n
  • This course isn’t about teaching you the tools, but about exploring the possibilities offered by the digital, networked and open space of the internet and how they might enhance the kinds of things you might want to do online.\nI don’t necessarily want to be evangelical about tools or even being online - I want you to come to an informed decision about the level of engagement which you feel is comfortable and appropriate.\nI can’t give you answers, hence there will be discussion in this session.\n
  • This course isn’t about teaching you the tools, but about exploring the possibilities offered by the digital, networked and open space of the internet and how they might enhance the kinds of things you might want to do online.\nI don’t necessarily want to be evangelical about tools or even being online - I want you to come to an informed decision about the level of engagement which you feel is comfortable and appropriate.\nI can’t give you answers, hence there will be discussion in this session.\n
  • \n
  • We’re discussing an activity which can be enhanced and transformed by digital online tools, but mustn’t lose sight of the activity itself and our aims for it. \n
  • Handout exercise\n\nlist all the people you consider to be in your professional network (types if not names) - here are a few suggestions. Then consider how many of them share characteristics with you. Then look at who knows another member of your network - draw lines. \n\nWho can best give you access to the things you wanted to focus on? Who can best give you access to other people?\n
  • \n
  • What other barriers do researchers experience?\n\nBubbles can also be created by algorithms and platforms, as well as Cambridge\n
  • Tweet or call out responses. Collate. Traditional responses, comment on patterns. In the old days, networking was dependent on a person, your supervisor, and an event, a conference or seminar. You can now bypass these. \n\nWhy is it not working for you? Barriers\n
  • Any of these can have negative sides...\n
  • Show of hands - how many people use these for professional reasons, how well do they work?\n\nHandout - pros and cons of each, functionality of each\n
  • Refer to the mindmap\n\ndiscuss in groups, feedback and then distribute handout\n
  • \n
  • gets more and more active rather than passive, and you become more visible.\n
  • Visibility - you may show up as having viewed a site (eg on LinkedIn) or as a ‘hit’ \n
  • Livetweeting has become a way to enhance conferences, allowing a many-to-many discussion rather than one-to-many. There is currently some debate about the ethics of this, in terms of public/private\n\nOnline networking can be used to facilitate networking at conferences you’re attending - to find out who’s going, to make contact and break the ice beforehand, to pick up new contacts when you’re there and not miss out on conversations. This is all based around hashtags\n\nYou can also network at conferences you’re not actually at. Either in real time by following the hashtag and seeing who’s interesting, or afterwards if the event is storified, to get more of a rounded view once the tweets have been curated or by looking at presentations online and commenting. \n
  • Searching is often not easy in academia - we are too specific!\n\nVisibility: You may show up personally as having searched eg Academia.edu LinkedIn\n\nMake it easy for people to search for you - use flavours.me or about.me or other ways to collate various aspects of your online network. See the previous session.\n\nsearching is a one-off event, much networkbuilding may happen fortuitously\n
  • Visibility: you have now drawn people’s attention to you, which they may or may not reciprocate. You’re still lurking though, but can still learn a lot from your network passively. \n
  • Hopefully culling people won’t be too visible...\n\nDo this after the session\n
  • Think about how you offer value - don’t swamp people with too general information\n\nReframe information as personal news or as a resource you think people might find interesting.\n
  • \n
  • How to make sure you are heard and visible\n
  • \n
  • \n
  • invite suggestions\n
  • \n
  • DO IT! \n
  • signpost them to the course to explore the tools in a more structured way in their own time, and how they might be embedded in their own work.\n
  • \n

Building your online network Building your online network Presentation Transcript

  • The Researcher Online: Building an Online Network Dr Helen Webster Digital Humanities Network University of Cambridge
  • Before we start...• We’ll be using Twitter to demonstrate some of the principles of online networking in this session.• Take a few moments to set up with wifi and log in to your Twitter account.• Hashtag for this session: #RONetwork
  • Before we start... I’d like to model the digital behaviour I’m advocating!• Feel free to livetweet #RONetwork• Slides are online: Slideshare http:// www.slideshare.net/drhelenwebster/• We’re recording the talk to create a digital artefact. We’ll be focussing on the presentation rather than discussions.
  • Aims
  • AimsNot to teach tools, but...
  • Aims Not to teach tools, but...• an awareness of the ways in which social and digital media platforms can enhance and be embedded in your work as a researcher
  • Aims Not to teach tools, but...• an awareness of the ways in which social and digital media platforms can enhance and be embedded in your work as a researcher• an understanding of the issues raised by social and digital media tools, potential pitfalls, good practice and future impacts on the profession
  • Aims Not to teach tools, but...• an awareness of the ways in which social and digital media platforms can enhance and be embedded in your work as a researcher• an understanding of the issues raised by social and digital media tools, potential pitfalls, good practice and future impacts on the profession• an awareness of and ability to evaluate the various types of digital tool and make informed decisions about your own engagement with them in your practice
  • Before we get online....
  • ...what do you want toget out of networking?
  • ...what do you want toget out of networking?
  • Analysing your current network• Family and friends Note which are:• Senior academics •Same specialism •Same discipline• Peers •Same institution •Same profession/sector •Same stage of career• Other academic staff •Same contacts - link the ones who know each other• Non-academic staff in HE Which are the best connected?• Members of professional Which are best able to bodies help you with your• Outside HE aims?
  • Characteristics of a good network• Mutual - you know them and they know you - you can approach them, they think of you• Skilled - contacts need to have means and motivation to help you• Diverse and dispersed (bigger isn’t always better)• Both close and distant, strong and weak contacts• Horizontal relationships of reciprocity, not vertical relationship of authority• People who don’t know each other
  • Networking as a Cambridge Early Career Researcher• Short-term projects • Friends/Peers/ Colleagues?• Narrow focus• Groups, not networks• Fragmentation of communication channels, few ‘bridges’• Hierarchical relationships Image: ‘Bubble’ by DJMcCrady http://www.flickr.com/photos/djmccrady/18954868/
  • How do you currently network? ?
  • Online networking• Access - not reliant on a person or event• Transcends geographical, institutional, disciplinary, hierarchical and professional boundaries• Reciprocal• Lighter touch - ongoing relationships, different levels• Asynchronous but can be in real time• Interactions and contact details can be preserved• Any of these can be negative as well as positive
  • Networking tools: the obvious ones• Twitter• Facebook (and similar)• LinkedIn• Academia.edu• See also Lanyrd, Graduate Junction, Methodspace, Researchgate
  • SWOT Strengths Weaknesses Opportunities ThreatsReview each tool also in terms of your specific networking aims
  • Networking tools: not so obvious onesAny platform which enables a profile, someform of content, and some way to interact.• JISCmail or ucam email lists researchers-forum@lists.cam.ac.uk. crassh-early-career-• Mendeley• Blogs• Digital file-sharing platforms (Slideshare, Issuu, Scribd, Soundcloud,Youtube)
  • Rheingold’s 8 stages for cultivating your Personal Learning Network • Explore • Feed • Search • Engage • Follow • Inquire • Tune • RespondHoward Rheingold (2012). Netsmart: How to thrive online
  • Building your online network: Explore• Different platforms - Functionality• Where types of contact congregate• Real life contacts online• ‘Black holes’ - people not online• What conversations are had, keywords and conventions used Who’s on Twitter? See what ‘follow’ suggestions it has.
  • Networking at Conferences• #Twittergate - the ethics of livetweeting at conferences• Use online networking to enhance conference attendance• Use online networking to network at conferences you’re not actually present at Tool: Lanyrd Twitter: search for #RONetwork
  • Building your online network: Search• Search engines: Google, Social Media search engines, built-in search boxes in platforms • Listorious • Socialmention • Technorati• Keywords, people’s names• OR snowball- see who well-connected people and institutions are connected to Twitter: Search for a person and/or a keyword/type of person.
  • Building your online network: Follow• Follow/connect/like/favourite/subscribe/friend...• Is this automatically reciprocal? Do you need it to be?• When they check you out, make sure there’s something to catch their attention (and check them out when they follow you!)• What level of interaction do you need from them? What might they need or value from you? Twitter: follow some of the other participants
  • Building your online network: Tune• Review your network periodically so that it doesn’t become too unwieldy or cluttered• Is reciprocity necessary?• Can you adjust frequency settings?• Are there tools to help you manage or review?• Can you easily (and invisibly) disconnect?• Review gaps in your network and potential new contacts periodically Twitter - do this after the session!
  • Maintaining your online network: Feed• You can offer value directly to an individual or to your network as a whole - on one platform or more, if they are interlinked.• What might they value? You should now know.• Don’t just offer self-promotion! Reframe it.• Pass on links and contacts as well as your own information Twitter: #ff Suggest someone else to follow
  • Maintaining your online network: Engage• Stop lurking!• Comment/favourite/like - add a personal comment if possible• Retweet/reblog/share/link if you think it would be valued by your network• Let people know their content is useful and why Twitter: retweet or reply to another of the session’s tweets
  • Maintaining your online network: Inquire• Ask your network: for information, advice, opportunities, contacts, or moral support...• Make general enquiries which can be passed on• Direct questions to individuals• Remember to thank and follow up!• Collate and pass on responses for others? Twitter: pose a question for the other participants - generally or individually
  • Maintaining your online network: Respond• Respond to general calls for help and information as well as ones directed at you• A response might be as simple as passing on a request or contact Twitter: reply to or retweet a question posed
  • Building and Maintaining your online network• Repeat the process periodically, beginning with re-exploring new platforms or changes to existing ones, and reassessing the online community
  • Bubbles, Echo chambers and Black holes• Strategies to break out of bubbles• Strategies to recognise echo chambers• Strategies to reach black holes Image: ‘Bubble’ by DJMcCrady http://www.flickr.com/photos/djmccrady/18954868/
  • Back to the real world• Integrate your online network identity with your real life • Add your twitter handle to your conference name badge • Catch up with Skype or Google Hangouts • Talk to people about what you’ve discovered online
  • Creating group networksWe’ve mainly dealt with your personalnetwork, but you can create larger networkstoo.What issue most affects early career researchernetworking for Humanities in Cambridge?Create a regular twitter chat around this, set upa Facebook group, an email list...
  • To explore further, see DH23Things Module Onehttp://dh23things.wordpress.com/
  • ResourcesOn Good Practice for Researchers • Vitae’s Handbook of Social Media for Researchers and Supervisors • RIN’s Social Media: A Guide for Researchers