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Residential nature of Crucible

The training, development, information and collaborative opportunity provided by Crucible is an intensive experience and one where participants are required to commit fully to each of the three Labs. The range of formal and informal activities is delivered in a programme that exceeds the ‘normal’ working day and the whole programme requires participants to engage in collaborative conversations and activities outside of the facilitated sessions and between the Labs. In the experience of organisers, having a busy residential programme creates a very different environment and through the shared experience of the Labs the group bonds and forms the sort of long-term network of contacts that otherwise would not form.

As a result there is a requirement for the programme to be residential (at least one night per Lab) to:

  • generate a committed learning and collaboration environment
  • create a working environment in which trust and links can develop quickly and be sustained
  • facilitate evening networking activities (including fun activities that promote trust and mutual respect)
  • provide distance from the day-to-day work of the researcher for the duration of the delivered part of the programme
  • encourage participants from a wide geographical area (outside daily commuting distance).

NESTA does not advise organisers to attempt to run a Crucible without at least one overnight stay per Lab. Our experience has shown us that such programmes are not able to create the sort of commitment from participants that makes Crucible successful.