Training and Mentoring of Science Shops:
a tool-kit for Community Based Research
The Training and Mentoring of Science Shops (TRAMS) project intends to encourage the development of new science shops through the provision of training and mentoring support. Besides that TRAMS will support the professional development of existing science shops and similar organisations through the sharing of training materials and the experiences from daily practices to update professional development.
TRAMS will offer new science shops, and alike organisations, a toolbox with training materials as well as a summer school on the science shop concepts and an individual mentoring programme for practical advice and support.
The objectives of TRAMS include coordinating activities for:
• supporting the development of new science shop initiatives;
• sharing of expertise on science shop procedures, strategies and impact and processes;
• use and dissemination of and provision of access to existing training materials;
• development of new targeted training materials;
• networking among science shops at national, regional and international level.
These activities will contribute to the overarching aims of improving competencies of today's scientists and fu-ture university graduates for co-operation with civil so-ciety as part of the development of science and tech-nology.
Furthermore such project intends to improve the scien-tific community's involvement with civil society knowl-edge and expertise in education and research as well as the civil society understanding of science and technol-ogy research. TRAMS is focusing on both users and suppliers in training and mentoring, because both groups are important stakeholders in the project. This will allow the project to have a direct input on the needs for training and mentoring and on the available tools and expertise. The users in the project are the pilot group of the mentoring and training activities.
TRAMS will develop specific structural services for the International Science Shop Network Living Knowledge. In this way the co-ordination actions in TRAMS will con-tribute to the goals of the network.
The development of innovative practices in science shops will be encouraged, through a customised train-ing programme toolbox and appropriate partnering and exchange (mentoring) among members of Living Knowledge.
The Living Knowledge magazine and website will be used for the dissemination of the information on TRAMS and the tools that will be developed. Activities, like the summer schools, will be announced on the Living Knowledge news list and newsletter.
All members of Living Knowledge can participate in activities of TRAMS and make use of the results ands ma-terials of TRAMS.
In TRAMS 18 organisations from 14 countries (Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Estonia, France, Germany, Greece, Iceland, Latvia, Netherlands, Romania, United King-dom, Spain and Turkey) cooperate. The project is coordinated by the Science Shop for Biology of the Utrecht University, the Netherlands.
TRAMS is a combination of experiences and new sci-ence shops. This combination will be a guarantee for customised tools and a relevant content of the toolbox.
TRAMS is funded by the European Commission under the Science and Society Programme. It is a three year project (2005-2008) started in May 2005.
TRAMS project co-ordinator
Caspar de Bok, Science Shop for Biology, Utrecht Uni-versity
More information about TRAMS project: