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Title: Strengthening ICTD Research Capacity in Asia (SIRCA) Program : mentorship model evaluation
Authors: Mizumoto, Ann
Date: 2011
Publisher: SIRCA
Abstract: The Mentorship Model evaluation studied more closely what was identified from the first SIRCA evaluation as a powerful and unique component of the SIRCA Program that has contributed significantly towards achieving the capacity building outcomes for ICTD researchers in Asia. The evaluation was entirely qualitative, relying on one-to-one recorded interviews conducted by the evaluator and the SIRCA Secretariat staff with the use of an interview schedule. Principal Investigators (PI) and Mentors participated in individual interviews, and where possible, joint Mentor-PI interviews were also carried out. The PIs and Mentors both had clear ideas of what an ―ideal Mentor‖ should be like but in reality, there was much ambiguity and vagueness regarding the actual responsibilities of the Mentor. On the one hand, Mentors generally felt hesitant about being too imposing and intrusive into the PI‘s independence and preferred to take a higher level supervisory stance that failed to result in a proliferation of collaborative work. On the other hand, some PIs yearned for hand-holding and close guidance with the Mentor but their expectations were not met or, in fact, not communicated properly. The current SIRCA model where Mentors are assigned to PIs made it harder for co-authorships to ensue as the matches were inevitably imperfect, but a more fundamental issue that the evaluation found was the lack of communication between the two parties from the very early stages of the relationship where they ideally would have met and frankly discussed with each other their backgrounds, interests, motivations, expectations, and practical issues like time commitment and scheduling. In addition to providing a deliberate space for this kind of discussion to occur, SIRCA can develop sharper definitions of the roles and duties of the Mentor and PI in the Terms of Reference and the Memorandum of Understanding. This can bring more clarity, structure, accountability, transparency, and satisfaction in the relationship...
Project Number: 104921
Project Title: Small Grants Program : Strengthening ICTD Research Capacity in Asia (SIRCA)
Access: Open Access
Copyright: IDRC
License: IDRC is copyright holder
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