On 23.3.2015-2.4.2015 the first RAMSES project workshop started at Cairo University CU). Tanja Woronowicz and Dr. Michael Boronowsky from the Innovation Capability Center of TZI at University Bremen started the innoSPICE training. Cairo University nominated participants from three different departments, Science, Nursing and Dentistry under the leadership of Prof. Dr. Mohamed Ewiss. The group of trainees was about 13 people from management and quality assurance from CU. To address the strong interest of CU in setting up an innoSPICE Hub and training center the RAMSES project team decided to increase the specific training on innoSPICE and to train much more innoSPICE experts in the framework of the RAMSES project than initially planned. Goal is to educate the appropriate resources at CU to perform continuous improvement regarding innovation, knowledge- and technology transfer processes of university-, faculty- and department management. A second goal is to prepare the establishment of an innoSPICE hub to offer services within Egypt and the Arab world and training related to quality assurance in these fields.
The training started with a general introduction to the complex role of a university in a regional (or national) innovation system and the importance of triple helix approaches at the first day. This introduction also provided the base to the process oriented quality assurance standard ISO/IEC 15504 SPICE and motivated the standard based model innoSPICE for its application in universities. Due to the interest in this topic there were very active discussions with the participants and first links were taken to the current situation at CU.
The second day started with a detailed introduction to the RAMSES project presenting project goals and the first year planning. The rest of the training days were dedicated to the innoSPICE methodology. The first part was oriented towards the structure of the process reference model and the principles of a capability assessment. The second part provided a rough overview of the different processes in the innoSPICE model. After this general introduction to innoSPICE the trainer team started to present the processes in detail. All presentations were accompanied by very active discussions regarding the current situation at CU and way to improve these processes. This was helpful for the group to increase their confidence in these topics and surely was a motivation to learn more about these new approaches in quality management. The trainer team was continuously taking care to keep the progress in the training effective. They were refocusing the discussions several times, as discussions regarding concrete improvement actions are planned later in the project. So, during these workshop days the innoSPICE processes Basic Science Knowledge Creation, Technology Transfer Concept and Tendering were presented and discussed. Even if this workshop was the first contact of the trainees with the innoSPICE process reference model it became quite obvious, that the RAMSES project is on a good track.
As the workshop was divided by a weekend there was a great opportunity to have some visits in the fantastic historic parts of Egyptian culture. With great support of CU we had a very interesting and impressive weekend. And most important a very motivating start of the RAMSES project!