The core capabilities of digital transformation you can’t afford to ignore: a model to assess research teams

Malcolm Wolksi1, Dr Michelle Krahe2, Joanna Richardson3

1Digital Solutions, Griffith University, Nathan, Australia
2Health Group, Griffith University, Gold Coast, Australia
3Library and Learning Services, Griffith University, Nathan, Australia


Within the higher education sector, there is a driving imperative to adapt to the new digital environment not only in areas involved in learning and teaching but also within research. While libraries play an important role in developing the digital literacy of researchers as individuals, little attention has been paid to the key digital skills and capabilities of the research team.


A critical review of digital transformation was undertaken from several broad areas (i.e. business, government and higher education) to identify suitable models or conceptual frameworks that could be applied to the research team environment. In addition, key elements that influence digital capability were identified.


As there were no existing frameworks suitable for assessing the digital capability of research teams, a model was developed by the authors. This model included five key transformation dimensions (continual assessment, culture, leadership, technical integration, workforce) and five operational capabilities (information management, analytical techniques, process agility, technology infrastructure, governance maturity). We describe how implementing the digital capability model, library staff can make an assessment and tailor support to better meet the needs of researchers across their organisation.


An increasingly important goal of research organisations is the need for continuous

development and adaptation of digital capability. Here we describe the key elements of an evidence-based model of digital capability with capacity-building principles and structured reflection and action. Importantly, this will also require collaboration between service providers in institutions from libraries, IT, research offices, graduate schools, faculty training providers and increasingly national providers.


Bio to come

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