From the 30th to the 31st of May, 2019, the DataSET project consortium paid a visit to the birthplace of Cervantes, a World Heritage Site which transcends the 16th century spirit through its early Renaissance architecture – Alcala de Henares, Spain. With a warm welcome from the representatives of Universidad de Alcala, the consortium held the second transnational partner meeting to share the progress and discuss the future of the project.

The two-day programme provided the participants with the opportunity to discuss the status-quo of the development of the intellectual outputs, dissemination efforts and plans for the sustainability of the project.

Output 1 – VET Guide to Data Skills Development

We are delighted to announce that the first output of the project – the VET Guide to Data Skills Development has been finalized. The representative from the partner, coordinating the creation of the guide (Sonia Naiba, Momentum) presented the final version of the guide to the consortium. The guide aims to raise the awareness of the value of the data skills for current and future entrepreneurs and to analyze what contemporary data skills are already known to the entrepreneurs and business advisors. In addition, the guide summarizes the strategies for teaching data skills to entrepreneurs, including the best practices.

Specifically, the guide gives the overview of the following:

  1. i) The results of a data skills survey, outlining the current skills and skills deficits of business trainers and advisors in participating countries;
  2. ii) Review of the policy environment regarding data skills for entrepreneurs and data skills education, at both EU and national and regional level;

iii) An introduction to strategies for teaching data skills to entrepreneurs, including best practice examples and testimonies.

The guide is in open access and can be downloaded here

Output 2 – DataSet Open Education Resources

The DataSet Open Education Resources will comprise of a curriculum, trainer’s guide and a suite of interactive online learning materials which enable teachers and trainers to enhance entrepreneur’s data skills in classrooms and small group training. The Leading partner of this intellectual output, Universidad de Alcala and its representative (Miguel Ángel Sicilia Urbán, a Data Scientist himself), presented the draft methodology for the data skills training model and led an extensive discussion on the DataSET curriculum with the consortium. Resulting in almost finalized draft, all the partners are to pilot test the curriculum in small group session with business advisors and entrepreneurs in fall 2019.

The training model and its accompanying resources will be testes during the Train the Trainers Learning Activity in Denmark to be held in April 2020.

Output 3 – DataSet Online Course

In the meeting the partners discussed the preliminary plans of translating the open educational resources, created as a part of the previous DataSet output, into an online interactive learning course for the entrepreneurs at all stages of their business development. Self-paced and open to virtually anybody, the course will open the opportunities for popularizing the acquisition of data skills among wider European (and international) population.

In addition to the talks about the intellectual outputs, the partners have briefly discussed the future arrangements for the learning week, dissemination and exploitation plans and administrative issues regarding the project’s implementation phase.

Overall, the meeting was a success in terms of its outcomes, supported by the generous hospitality of the host partner. The partners enjoyed the traditional central Spanish cuisine and its famous tapas and a view of a historic city center of Alcala de Henares.  The next partner meeting is planned to take place in Leitrim, Ireland on 10-11 October, 2019.