As part of my work as Research Data Steward, I was asked by our Open Research Co-ordinator to investigate the open research support available at Russell Group universities and how the University of Edinburgh compares. Open research, which is also known as “open science” or “open scholarship”, refers to a collection of practices and principles around transparency, reproducibility and integrity in research. To understand to what extent Russell Group universities have adapted to the ongoing development of open science, we have conducted analysis in terms of four areas. Do they have a published policy around Open Research? Do they have an Open Research Roadmap? Do they mention any training or specific support for researchers in achieving Open Research? What services do they provide to support Open Research?
Firstly, we checked whether those universities have a policy/statement that outlines the university’s approach to support open research and key principles for researchers. Less than 30% of these universities have a clear policy or statement for Open Research. Good examples include the University of Cambridge, University of Sheffield, and Cardiff University.
Secondly, we checked whether they have a Roadmap that provides a set of questions that universities can use to monitor their progress in implementing Open Science principles, practices and policies at a local level. Among the Russell Group members, University of Edinburgh and University College London – two members of the League of European Research Universities (LERU) –  provide a roadmap/page dedicated to monitor their progress. (Ours can be found on this Open Research page.)
Thirdly,what services are provided to researchers to make their work public? Most universities provide support like a data repository (except for LSE), Research Data Management support, Open Access to publications and thesis and guidance on sharing research software. A few provide support on protocols sharing. Some universities have started hosting an open research conference. For example, UCL Open Science Conference 2021, 2022, Open Research Symposium hosted by the University of Southampton, and University Open Research Conference, June 2021, at the University of Birmingham. As an active member of LERU, our university also joined in to launch our first Edinburgh Open Research Conference in May, 2022.
Lastly, we have found all universities have training relevant to open research, with around half of them clearly advertising their training. Some good examples which we could learn from include the “Open Research education for doctoral students” from Imperial College and a practical libguide for open research provided by the University of York.
We are glad to see that Russell Group members have started adopting actions to support Open research, which is considered part of the new normal for research-intensive universities. However, this is a long and ongoing process. We have seen that many universities are still in the early stages of the implementation process and more can be done to advance their practice, including ours.
Research Data Steward
 See the UCL Blog post for more information. https://blogs.ucl.ac.uk/open-access/2022/03/15/bookings-now-open-for-ucl-open-science-conference-2022/
 See https://intranet.birmingham.ac.uk/as/libraryservices/library/research/open-research.aspx