Creative Communities

creative_communitiesAs the world’s challenges grow more complex, assembling a diverse group of minds to address and resolve them becomes essential. The interdisciplinary projects that result require networks and communities to sustain the collaboration. Knowinnovation has a toolbox of both virtual and face-to-face solutions for building communities and driving change at the national, and even global, level.

Here are a few of the communities we’ve been supporting:

African Science Leadership Program
The Africa Science Leadership Program aims to develop early- and mid-career African academics in the areas of thought leadership, team management and research development with the intention of enabling them to solve the complex issues facing both Africa and the global community. The program will create a lasting network of science leaders on the continent, spanning not only across countries, but also across disciplinary boundaries. Theirs is a private community, for now, but you can learn more about the project here.

Ideas 2 Interventions (I2I)
One of the biggest challenges in the medical research “pipeline”, is to translate bench-based research into clinical applications. This process, often referred to as translational research, is a major area of focus for research funding bodies around the world. The National Institutes of Health has been particularly active in this area. The Ideas to Interventions community is an experiment to see if virtual collaboration tools can help to build a wider, and more effective, process for bringing basic behavioural psychological research into the hands of clinicians.

The Nexus for Exoplanet System Science (NExSS) is a research coordination network dedicated to the study of planetary habitability. The goals of NExSS are to study the diversity of exoplanets; learn about how their history, geology, and climate interact to create conditions for life; and accelerate the discovery and characterization of other potentially life-bearing worlds in the galaxy, using a systems science approach. Researchers in the network aim to understand where habitable niches are most likely to occur – that is, which planets are most likely to be habitable.

FuturePhy is an NSF-sponsored program of conferences, workshops and hackathons on the Tree of Life that aims to promote novel, integrative data analyses and visualization, interdisciplinary syntheses in phylogenetic sciences, and cross-cutting uses of phylogenetics to develop and address new research questions and applications. You can visit their web community here.

In 2012, the National Science Foundation (NSF), the Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI), and the National Institute for General Medical Sciences (NIH) launched the collaborative effort called the Partnership for Undergraduate Life Sciences Education (PULSE) as a community of scientists dedicated to department-level implementation of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) Vision and Change recommendations, nationally. You can follow the ongoing results of their effort on the PULSE community webpage.

EarthCube, founded in 2011, is an initiative of the NSF and the ACI, enabling geoscientists to address the challenges of understanding and predicting changes in a complex and evolving solid Earth, hydrosphere, atmosphere, space environment systems. It’s a community-governed effort to develop a common cyberinfrastructure for collecting, analyzing, visualizing and sharing forms of data and resources, creating new capabilities for sharing data and knowledge and conducting research. Visit their on-line community.

NASA’s Astrobiology Program needs a community of experts in astronomy and astrophysics, Earth and planetary sciences, microbiology and evolutionary biology, cosmochemistry, and other relevant disciplines in order to address the fundamental questions: How does life begin and evolve? Is there life beyond Earth and, if so, how can we detect it? What is the future of life on Earth and in the universe? One of the primary objectives of this community is to develop the next generation of the Astrobiology road map.

Big Data Regional Innovation Hubs
The NSF and Usenix sponsored four regional Charrettes for Accelerating the Big Data Innovation Ecosystem to convene stakeholders across different sectors to create “Big Data Regional Innovation Hubs” to support interested local stakeholders within the regions.

Knowinnovation has partnered with HubZero to create our own platform, Hub.KI, designed deliberately to host interdisciplinary communities of collaborating academics and scientists. If you want to create an on-line community let us know. We can give you guidance based on our experiences building these networks, and yet we can customize it to suit the specific needs of your challenge.