In order to plan and realize your project successfully it is essential that the infrastructure of the executing institution as well as its resources be at the disposal of the project. Generally, the following resources are at the disposal of the project:
- access to specialized literature, services on line, etc
- consultation with colleagues, supervision and peer evaluation
- data-processing support
Financial resources (see 'Fundraising')
Infrastructure and expendable items
- individual work places
- other working areas (conference facilities, etc.)
- data-processing facilities (computer, printer, etc.)
- expendable items
- recreational facilities (cafeteria)
It is useful to establish clear rules regarding the use of the infrastructural facilities and other resources. These resources are either freely at the disposal of the project - in the sense that they are regarded as invested funds - or else there is an expectation that the use of the infrastructure and facilities must be partially or fully refunded by the project or by external means. This point must be taken into consideration when establishing the budget for the project. The costs for using the institution's infrastructure and other resources can be entered in the budget as a lump sum or they can be itemized.
Why you would disregard these aspects
- When planning your project you assume that all you need will be at your disposal.
- You take the free and limitless use of the executing institution's resources for granted.
What you have to gain
You and your team will save your energy by having the institution's infrastructure at your disposal and by being given sufficient work and storage space. Thanks to your colleagues' know-how and experience, you can learn how to make your project more effective.
What you can actually do
- Use all opportunities of exchange and offers of help from within the institution
- Make sure that all members of the team have a fully equipped work place at their disposal or look into other solutions (working from home)
- Check what infrastructure is available to whom and when
- Take into account the use of the infrastructure when you establish your budget
Questions for critical reflection
- Is the project well integrated into the institution and are the structures used in an optimal way
- Did you check how the existing infrastructure can be used for the needs of the project (and at what price)?
- Did you check the possibilities of professional support within the institution?