29 August 2022
Unite! fosters open science and builds a community of open science support persons
Unite! universities explored emerging perspectives about new open science practices, principles and goals at the Open Science Summer School that took place at Aalto University on 7-9 June, 2022.
One of the focus areas of the UNITE.H2020 project is the promotion of open science. Open science is transparent and accessible knowledge that is shared and developed through collaborative networks. It involves sharing ideas, data, methods and results with local, national, regional and global collaborative networks of research participants. It also goes beyond this to encompass the production and use of this scientific knowledge among these collaborative networks.

This radical creative event was designed to foster Unite!’s open science community and advance the strategic objectives set up in Unite!’s Open Science and Innovation roadmap.

“Open science is not a fancy tech slogan. It implies new philosophical, sociological, and organizational principles, practices and goals for conducting research and innovation in the digital era. It brings about a new role for researchers. We are exploring the present of a new institution of science in the digital era, to build our open and democratic future as European Universities”, explains Rubén Vicente-Sáez, leader of Work Package 'Creating a High Impact European Open Science and Innovation University'.
 
Rubén Vicente-Sáez with colleagues were ideating the best practice handbook.
Rubén Vicente-Sáez with colleagues were ideating the best practice handbook.
Open science trainings attract a record amount of participants 
Anne Sunikka, Head of Open Science and ACRIS Unit at Aalto University, introduced Aalto’s open science and research services and talked about how open science has evolved in Finland. In 2014 when Aalto introduced its open access policy only 13% of publications were open access, today the number is already close to 80%. Currently Aalto’s research services focus strongly on training. Enrico Glerean, Staff Scientist & Data Agent, explained how they offer a series of research data management and open science trainings that are open for anyone to attend. The trainings have gathered thousands of participants from all over the world. Recordings of the trainings are also openly accessible to everyone here. 

Walk and talk in the nature 
By exploring the nearby nature reserve by foot, the Summer School participants had an opportunity to explore, exchange and network on how open science support services for research communities are being promoted and articulated in each partner university. The group visited multiple infrastructures at Aalto University supporting open science, like Biofilia. Victoria Kang, Biofilia Lab Manager, presented how Biofilia provides artists, researchers, students and scholars with the ability to engage with the life sciences and their applications within an artistic and cultural context, thus making creative and critical links between biosciences, engineering and the arts.

The best practices will be shared later this year in the form of an open science handbook. It will be a very practical guide targeted to both researchers, university managers and national policy makers.