Accepting applications now for April 15-19, 2024 (Austin, TX)
Is your cyberinfrastructure project or science gateway ready to create a plan for ongoing growth?
Has your project hit a “funding wall”?
Are you developing plans for a new cyberinfrastructure/science gateway and need to refine your strategy?
Gateway Focus Week is a workshop designed for innovative research teams to work together on producing a strong sustainability plan. Leaders and teams at all stages of a project benefit from the supportive, immersive setting that Focus Week provides. Working closely with peers and experienced coaches, you will learn new skills and immediately start applying them to your own gateway.
Focus Week covers:
Crafting a clear definition of your project's value to users and funders
Identifying your audience and stakeholders and their needs
Clarifying the position of your gateway in the broader landscape
Exploring funding models that are likely to be the best fit for your science gateway
User experience testing
Over the course of the week, teams articulate a clear sustainability strategy, a concept model they present to the full group at the end of the week and gain feedback. The tools you use during the week can be used as your project continues to mature. Take the time to step away from your desk and invest in your future!
Thanks to the generous support of NSF, we are able to offer this workshop with no registration fees for attendees. Attendees will only need to cover their own travel, lodging, and meal costs.
Airport: Austin-Bergstrom International Airport (AUS) -- 17 miles away from TACC
Ride share services are recommended if you chose not to drive.
Lyft or Uber enter “Texas Advanced Computing Center” as destination
Food: Light refreshments will be served through out the week with lunches provided Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday.
What will you learn?
What You Will Learn
During the week, participants progress through several stages of developing a sustainability strategy for their project. Our instructors guide you to look deeper for what truly makes your cyberinfrastructure/science gateway uniquely valuable.
Topics covered during the week include:
Effective Communication: The Napkin Drawing exercise gets everyone up and around the room, markers in hand!
Value Proposition: This brainstorm guides participants in placing users at the heart of their value statement.
Audience Understanding: Deeply understanding audience needs is the key to any good sustainability strategy. We’ll show you tools to use to go beyond assumptions to knowing what makes your users tick.
Market Landscape: You are not alone! This interactive exercise helps teams think strategically about the space they operate in: what problem is your science gateway solving for users? How does your science gateway compare to others offering different options?
Budgeting for Sustainability: Grant budgets are one thing, but science gateways moving past start-up have to consider ongoing operations differently. Our instructors will show you how to use activity-based budgeting to develop an all-in budget for your project.
Finding your Funding Model: The trendiest revenue model is not always your best bet. This guided brainstorming will introduce a new way of thinking about which models might be the best fit for your science gateway.
User Experience: This interactive session shares a quick but very effective way to get started with some UX fundamentals today.
Hear about the Focus Workshop from past attendees
“Participating in Focus Week fundamentally transformed our way of thinking and has changed how we approach operations and how we assess impact. We now have a clear conceptual model for how to think about and address sustainability.”
— Michael Barton, CoMSES Network, Arizona State University
“ESIP Lab has funded over 20 projects since we attended Focus Week, and I’m able to take the tools that I learned and just use that language and pass it on to those projects. It gave me a mindset to continually evaluate and re-evaluate the Lab, too—Is our value proposition the same? What’s our niche?”
— Annie Burgess, ESIP Lab
[Focus Week] gave us structure and helped us to all start speaking in similar languages. Being on the same page with everyone on the team helped us achieve our goals and secure funding for the new phase of our project, GeoEDF.”
— Carol Song, GeoEDF, Purdue University
Sustainability trainings are taught by our lead instructors, Juliana Casavan and Nancy Maron.
Juliana Casavan is a program designer and facilitator and teaches others how to build and implement strategies for success.
Currently, she is a program manager for MatchBOX Coworking Studio, the leading coworking space in Greater Lafayette, Indiana, where she coaches local startups and entrepreneurs through strategic planning and product development.
Prior to joining MatchBOX, Juliana was a founding member of the Purdue Foundry, an internationally recognized leader in university startups and technology transfer. During her time, she created Firestarter, the premier startup workshop of Purdue University, leading over 500 teams of researchers and students through the ideation process.