UCL Human Resources


Digital badges - Data & Insight CoP

Bettina Baumann and Valentina Seravalle, project leads for the Data & Insight Community of Practice (CoP), tell us about the CoP's digital badge project.

Data and Insight Leadership Digital Badge

25 January 2023

What is the project?  

The aim for the project, led by Valentina and Bettina, is to create a framework offering colleagues the opportunity to gain digital badges in recognition of their engagement and contribution to the CoP and the wider network of data and insight professionals at UCL. The digital badges display and store achievements for members of the Data & Insight (D&I) CoP. 

We have three badges to award active members of the CoP leadership. The badges are hyperlinked and can be put into email signatures or shared on social media. 

The badges can also work as a tool for reflection on personal and professional development. We worked together with the UCL Organisational Development team to align criteria against the specifications of the UCL Data & Insight Careers Framework and have obtained their full endorsement. 

D&I digital badges are awarded on submission of a short application where candidates are asked to explain how their skills and achievements satisfy the requirements for the relevant digital badge. 

What impact do you hope the project will have on the practice area? 

We hope that it will result in users engaging more in the CoP as well as encouraging other people to join. Being acknowledged for the work done and time spent in a CoP shouldn’t go under the radar. This should provide further justification to commit time to something they enjoy and, in doing so, help the CoP thrive. 

For those colleagues wanting to advance in their careers or move into a Data & Insight role, we hope the badges will provide a blueprint for the skills required to take the next step and be a useful tool to guide discussion in key moments, such as appraisals and performance reviews.  

We hope to be able to inspire other CoPs to also take up the digital badges initiative. 

How does the project impact the CoP?

We have only recently launched the project and the first deadline for applications will be the end of this term. We’ve seen an uptake in interest in the roadmap we have for the CoP already though. After all, members will have to complete certain things to receive a digital badge!  

The Doctoral School has also taken up our initiative for awarding digital badges for their transparency in research training course. 

How have the project leads benefitted?

The experience has greatly enriched the staff who led the project, and we would happily do it all again. It has been fantastic to work with colleagues that we usually wouldn’t work with and on something outside of our immediate day to day tasks. We’ve both learnt new skills and enjoyed doing something for the CoP. 

We've also had the opportunity to experiment with platforms we had relatively little or no experience of, such as SharePoint and Qualtrics. In both cases, what we have learnt has turned out to be useful and directly applicable to day-to-day roles.

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