Project Management

Most Bass Connections project teams appoint at least one person to serve as a project manager. This role is critical to the effective functioning of project teams and offers those serving in the role a great opportunity to gain experience managing complex projects.

In 2019-20, we are partnering with Duke Libraries to offer workshops and resources to Bass Connections project managers. Materials from prior sessions, and other recommended online resources, are posted below. We also strongly encourage all project managers to spend some time reviewing the Bass Connections Tools for Team Success

Please check back for updates or contact Meghan O'Neil to be added to the project manager distribution list for future session announcements. 

Past Sessions and Materials

Communicating Your Team’s Research from Idea to Impact
In this interactive session, Jory Weintraub, Science Communication Program Director and Senior Lecturing Fellow for the Duke Initiative for Science & Society, discussed the basic principles of good research communications, including how to effectively communicate complex ideas to diverse audiences, how to identify and prioritize key audiences and stakeholders for your team’s research and how to create a communications pitch and activate a communications plan. Participants had the opportunity to brainstorm prospective audiences for their research, explore different methods of research presentation and communication and draft (and receive feedback on) effective messages that convey the impact of their team’s research.

Date: March 3, 2020
Presenters: Jory Weintraub (Science & Society)

Documentation: Organizing Your Information for Sanity and Sustainability
In this session, Sophia Lafferty-Hess, Senior Research Data Management Consultant at Duke Libraries, led a discussion on best practices in documentation. She outlined key types of documentation and addressed questions such as how to prioritize essential information, how to integrate documentation into a team’s workflow and how to consider motivation and audience as the team frames and refines its documentation processes. We also heard from three individuals on Bass Connections project teams, who shared examples of how they have organized their “stuff” (files, data, images, etc.) with an eye towards the future.

Date: January 31, 2020
Presenters: Sophia Lafferty-Hess (Duke Libraries), Hannah Jacobs (Building Duke; Wired! Lab), Sandra Luksic ’20 (Project Vox), Will Niver (Coal in America; Duke Energy Initiative)

Sustaining Momentum and Adjusting Course
In this session, we discussed strategies for sustaining momentum and making adjustments to ensure the team accomplishes its goals. Suggestions include building in time for team-building; revisiting goals and timelines as a team; and regularly monitoring the project plan as a team. We also reviewed the results of the Bass Connections pulse survey and found that many teams are encountering similar challenges. 

Date: November 25, 2019

Optimizing Team Communications and Meetings
According to the Project Management Institute, 90% of a project manager’s time should be spent communicating! In this session, we discussed strategies for managing team communications, including how to most effectively use in-person team meetings.

Date: November 1, 2019
Presenters: Liz Milewicz (Duke Libraries), Sophia Lafferty-Hess (Duke Libraries), Laura Howes (Bass Connections)

Conversations about Project Management
Panel and discussion with current and former Bass Connections project managers on best practices and troubleshooting around team challenges.

Date: October 4, 2019 
Presenters: Savannah Erwin (Clinical Psychology-Ph.D. Student), Meredith Graham (Music-Ph.D. Student), William Krenzer (Postdoc, Duke Science & Society), Liz Milewicz (Duke Libraries), Sophia Lafferty-Hess (Duke Libraries), Laura Howes (Bass Connections)

Managing Bass Connections Projects & Teams
One-day workshop for incoming Bass Connections and Story+ Project Managers.

Date: May 7, 2019
Presenters: Liz Milewicz (Duke Libraries), Jen Darragh (Duke Libraries), Ciara Healy (Duke Libraries), Sophia Lafferty-Hess (Duke Libraries), Hannah Jacobs (Wired! Lab), Maria LaMonaca Wisdom (Graduate Student Advising and Engagement)

Online Resources

Project managers may also be interested in the following online resources offered by LinkedIn Learning. Duke students, faculty and staff can access LinkedIn Learning for free through Duke’s university-wide license. To log in with your NetID, go to: