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High impact of the Workshop on Project Management at FTM

Successful writing of project proposals as well as project management and administration require not only adequate skills of researchers but also significant organizational support from the institution. This presents a significant challenge in Widening countries including Serbia and Twinning projects are recommended to particularly address this issue in connection to the respective coordinating institution. With this aim, the ExcellMater and TwinPrebioEnz projects have successfully organized the Workshop on Project Management at the FTM, February 7 – 9, 2023, which included variety of interactive activities. More than 50 attendees were offered the opportunity to prepare in advance project proposal concepts on their research and send them to Prof. Mauro Alini (AO Research Institute Davos) and Prof. Michael Gasik (Aalto University). The Workshop started with the introductory lecture on project hypotheses, aims, objectives, and impacts given by Prof. Alini, after which a lively discussion was carried out on individual project proposals, providing inputs to the authors from the guest professors and the audience. In the afternoon a poster session was organized gathering more than 40 posters, which presented the ExcellMater and TwinPrebioEnz projects, participating institutions and individual research results particularly focusing on early-stage researchers.

During the next day, the Workshop continued with the lecture of Prof. Michael Gasik on the reviewing process of project proposals particularly focusing on the reviewer’s point of view followed by detailed description of post-award grant management presented by Patrizia Hongisto (Aalto University). On the third day, the attendees had the opportunity to learn about graphical presentations of project components at the lecture of Luca Meesters (Radboud university medical center) and to work in teams to draw some examples by using commercial software (BioRender).

Prof. Ellen van den Bogaard (Radboudumc) presented the practices and support services at the Radboud university medical center for successful preparation of project proposals and project management and administration. The Workshop participants who have prepared their project proposal concepts were offered the opportunity to correct their proposals according to the obtained inputs and include a graphical presentation of one of the project components and to send the materials to Prof. Alini and Prof. van den Bogaard for assessment and suggestions.

Finally, the Workshop ended with a round table discussion on finding best practices for assisting researchers at FTM to successfully compete for national and international research funding. The Dean’s Office of FTM strongly supported the Workshop by participation of Prof. Petar Uskoković, Dean, and Prof. Mirjana Kijevčanin, Vice Dean, in the round table and drawing a strategy for institutional help for the researchers in project proposal writing and project management. In specific, FTM is planning to appoint a dedicated person for informing the research staff on national and international calls for proposals as well as technical examination of the proposals. Also, a plan was made to form a focus group of skilled scientists at FTM who will provide some specific training seminars related to their experiences addressing specific project types. Finally, it was proposed that during the next 2 site expert visits from the Aalto University, a seminar is organized on specific topics in project management. Overall, the Workshop has shown high interest of the researchers as well as leadership of FTM in concrete measures to increase skills and capacities for successful project proposal preparation and project management.

Take a look at the overview of the Workshop

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