Info Overload..

new monitor, originally uploaded by matt_jukes.

OK so I have settled in to my new office at the Hub (just in time to have to move in a couple of weeks time!) and have also finally got my work station pretty much set up.

I am using a 2 monitor (ish) set up with my Macbook and a seperate 20″ monitor – and despite my original plan all my communications channels are taking up all the space on my big monitor (as you can see from the pic above!) and my actual ‘work’ stuff is on the 13″ Macbook screen! Thing is Skype is closed at this point as well…so far it seems to be working so I’ll stick to this set up for a while – but I think I can see another (bigger) monitor in my future!

JISC08 is dead, long live JISC09

OK so the JISC Conference 2008 was on Tuesday and its taken a day or 2 for me to recover – though mainly due to celebratory activities post-conference (though I am not alone as one or 2 members of the JISC Comms team and at least one member of First Great Western staff will testify to!).

The JISC Conference is a massive undertaking and I’m not sure people realise just how much work goes into such a short event.  Planning for JISC09 starts on Monday!  This will continue for the entire year with a number of really hectic period long before the conference.  The 3Gs of Greg, Grace and Georgia will have the conference in the back of their minds pretty much permanently – and as someone who had a few years of that I both don’t envy them but have every confidence they’ll do another amazing job.

This year, with the help of MultiMediaMan (aka Hector), I had the pleasure of leading JISCs experiments in adding various web based channels to the event to allow those not attending to follow the event but also to support people there in person.

Generally I was happy with the way this went – it wasn’t without its mistakes and we tried to evolve what we were offering over the course of the day based on real time feedback but still theres plenty of room for improvement.  Then again I wouldn’t expect anything less – it was always supposed to be very much in the ‘beta’ mode and the comments and feedback we recieved from people during and after were all extremely useful and constructive.  I have no doubt we’ll continue to make use of some or all of these tools at events in the future and will look to have them far more finely tuned by next years conference in Edinburgh.

For a flavour of what was happening at the conference take a look at (courtesy of Mike Ellis whose help was invaluable in pulling all this together)

I’m always happy to hear from anyone who has comments about the conference or just general ideas of how to improve things in the future – I have a whole load of crazy a$$ ideas that I’m going to spring on people on Monday at the first planning meeting so am always happy to hear other peoples as well!

BCE session at JISC 08

[notes by Louisa Dale]

Simon Whittemore opened a session addressing the barriers to Business and Community Engagement: defined as ‘the strategic management of interactions, partnerships and transactions external to the institution.

Perhaps interesting that the public sector currently remains the most significant proportion of an (education) institution’s external engagement.

Business and community engagement professionals need solutions to broker knowledge transfer / exchange and professionals.

JISC’s innovation programme aims to enhance institutions’ efficiency, effectiveness and opportunities and help institutions overcome the barries to access to institutional knowledge assests for business and community organisations.

With significant political drivers, not least supported by the creation of DIUS, there are challenges for institutions. Cultural change,  new skills and support services (contact and information management) are required to support employer engagement and to encourage the exploitation of research innovation.

Jason Campbell spoke on behalf of JISC Legal, which supports the higher education sector in understanding the legal issues related to the use of technology. JISC comissioned a study (now available) into the legal barriers (or better still opportunities being missed) to exploit institutional assets for the purposes of business and community engagement.

HEFCE recently funded a study (now available) to investigate and produce guidelines for the use of Publicly- funded Infrastructure, Services and Intellectual Property.