Digital Upskilling for Researchers at Perth ResBaz 2022

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WADSIH

Digital Upskilling for Researchers at Perth ResBaz 2022

The Perth Research Bazaar (ResBaz) is an intensive 3-day festival and conference where researchers come together to upskill in next-generation digital research tools and take part in computational training workshops and an array of supporting electives.

This event is part of a global movement aimed at equipping researchers with the digital skills required to conduct cutting-edge research in the 21st century. Rather than relying solely on external assistance from IT professionals, the focus of this event is to empower researchers with the skills they need to help themselves.

This year we had over 150 participants, presenters and helpers come together in Perth to learn, connect and network. WADSIH is proud to have hosted this year’s event, but we couldn’t have done it without an amazing support network:

Thank you to our co-organisers Curtin Institute for Computation and Pawsey Supercomputing Centre who helped pull off this fantastic 3-day event and to all of our sponsors The University of Notre Dame AustraliaCurtin UniversityMurdoch University Graduate Research School; and The University of Western Australia for their support.

Resbaz kicked off with an Official Opening event at the Curtin Medical School, Bentley. The cohort were welcomed by WADSIH Director, Alex Jenkins and then received an introduction to the Curtin Institute for Computation (CIC) by Professor Melanie Johnston-Hollitt – Director of the CIC and ASDAF. Dr Kathryn Napier, Lead Data Scientist at the Curtin Open Knowledge Initiative (COKI/CIC) then gave participants an overview of Resbaz and the ethos behind it that had brought everyone together for this learning festival.

An array of upskilling training streams, including Bash/Git, Python and R, coupled with over 20 elective sessions covering building your brand, data security and ethics, learning what to do when your data gets ‘too big’ plus a heap more enabled participants to tailor their ResBaz experience across the 3 days. Helpers were at the ready during each session and at breaks to ensure participants had plenty of support as they explored data analysis and visualisation.

Participants were also provided with ample opportunity to network during the community events, including the very popular WADSIH-hosted Welcome Sundowner where posters prepared earlier that day provided a platform to share their research and access feedback from the session presenters and other attending industry experts.

ResBaz officially closed with a CIC-hosted Career Focus panel session with industry experts, chaired by Alex Jenkins. CIC Director, Prof. Melanie Johnston-Hollitt, Kim Carter, Dr Kathleen Franklyn, and Sarada Lee provided a summary of their career journeys and offered advice to the audience on what will likely shape the ‘future workforce’, how participants can leverage and apply the skills they’ve learnt during ResBaz, the careers these skills could be applicable to, and key areas they could look to upskill to improve future employment prospects.

It was fantastic to see such a diverse group of researchers, research technologists and higher degree by research students coming together to enhance their digital literacy, and equipping themselves with the skills they need to  to conduct cutting-edge research in the 21st century.