Capacity-building must be a concern of any academic or scholarly community. Typically, early career researchers or graduate students are encouraged to focus on small-scale problems, both because they are tractable and allow for rapid progress that demonstrates the individual compentency of the researcher.

DBIR projects provide multiple opportunities for early career researchers to develop their research in the context of the larger collaborative project. For this to succeed, senior researchers need to make space for and support the agendas of their developing colleagues, taking into account the negotiated goals of the partnership.