How does Global Mentoring work?
The global mentoring model is implemented by recruiting experienced, high profile professors in the global science community to serve as research directors (mentors) of newly established research centers of excellence abroad. These mentors will also place their former students (proteges) or close associates as principal investigators abroad and help them to build research capacity and infrastructure. The principle investigators (proteges) will then serve as mentors to rising scientists and young scholars at these newly established centers. This results in a sustainable model that ensures the continual transfer of knowledge and experience from one generation of scholars to the next.
The Principles of Extending Mentoring Globally
Principle 1: Inclusivity
An open and inclusive culture of research and learning is essential for success. Women and minorities must be actively recruited and retained in Centers of Global Science.
Principle 2: Mutual Understanding
Experienced, high profile professors, recruited as mentors, must be sincerely committed to the goal of installing the global mentoring model. These mentors serve as an example to the proteges and emerging scholars in how to build research capacity and infrastruture. All individuals involved must understand and be able to work through cultural and language barriers to achieve common goals. Finally, there needs to be a foundation of mutual trust and respect moving forward.
Principle 3: Accessibility
Mentors, proteges, and emerging scholar must be able to freely move accross international borders. Additionally, electronic communication is necessary for relaying research results, updates, and progress.
Principle 4: Working from a Position of Strength
The experience and wisdom of the mentors involved in a global science venture must be taken advantage of. Proteges, who are typically beginning their independent careers, are more willing to move abroad and may even value the opportunity to begin their careers in a new setting.
Principle 5: A Solid Infrastructure
Researchers involved (including the mentor and proteges) must have a clear vision for what the mentoring process entails, the goals they plan to accomplish, and a viable plan for how to be sucessful. Mechanisms for ensuring that space, equipment, financial resources, and personnel must be in place prior to the endeavor being initiated.
Principle 6: Sustainability
The goals of creating a mentoring program are not solely based on mentoring students; they also must ensure that the research center will continue to thrive for many years. Intellectual property must be addressed, but should not hinder any collaborative effort. It is recommended that a contract be put in place that highlights the parameters of the collaboration program: leadership matters, operation and management, intellectual property, conflict resolution, and, if applicable, funding.
Principle 7: Funding
Start-up funds are typically available in the home country for the creation of new centers of excellence, provided there is a robust research agenda in place. In the event that such funds are not readily available, mentors must assist proteges in defining an achievable research agenda and in writing grant applications to make a convincing case for obtaining seed funds.
Principle 8: Institutional and Intergovernmental Support
The mutual governments of the partnering institutions must be informed and consulted with as the mentoring program is being organized, planned, and developed. This encourages transparency and allows researchers to collaborate and operate in a supportive atmosphere.