ELIXIR has launched the first Call for Staff Exchange projects between ELIXIR Nodes. The purpose of the ELIXIR Staff Exchange programme is to support capacity building in ELIXIR Nodes and the exchange of best practices in bioinformatics service provision. The programme will also strengthen the links between ELIXIR Nodes and support the interoperability and sustainability of ELIXIR services and data resources.
The first Staff Exchange projects will be selected through an internal peer-review process and will kick-off starting from October 2017. The Call is open to universities and research institutes which are part of an ELIXIR Node and the intention is to fund four staff exchange projects from thiell. Based on the feedback and experience from this first Call, the Staff Exchange Programme may be extended to SMEs and external collaborators.
Contact Susanna Repo, the ELIXIR Programme Manager for more information: susanna.repo [at] elixir-europe.org
Building annotation infrastructure in ELIXIR Nodes
The ELIXIR Staff Exchange Programme builds on the experience gained during the ELIXIR pilot Staff Exchange project between EMBL-EBI and Masaryk University (ELIXIR Czech Republic). The project trained six graduate students from the Masaryk University (MU) in the annotation of data in the Protein Databank in Europe (PDBe), with the goal of building local capacity for annotation of PDBe data in the Czech Republic and establishing a longer-term partnership between EMBL-EBI and MU.
Besides the immediate benefits of building annotation expertise in ELIXIR Czech Republic and improving the annotation data in PDBe (close to 300 macromolecular complexes were annotated as part of this project), the project also served as a successful proof of concept for establishing annotation capacity at ELIXIR Nodes and strengthening links between ELIXIR Nodes.
Radka Svobodova, Head of Chemoinformatics and Bioinformatics team at MU and coordinator of the Czech annotation team, said: “In the long term, the project has helped us strengthen our existing collaboration with PDBe. Our communication have become more regular and effective and we established reporting procedures, and the level of trust have become deeper.”
The collaboration between PDBe and ELIXIR Czech Republic now continues with support from EU Regional Development Funds grant and has expanded to other institutes within ELIXIR Czech Republic.