Edinburgh Open Research Conference 2024

Join us on May 29th for the 2024 edition of the Open Research Conference. This year we are addressing the big challenge: culture change. It is not simply enough to facilitate open access and FAIR Data. We need to embed all aspects of Open Research into our everyday practices.

Join us to consider the broad themes of culture change, along with the role of next generation metrics, education, training and skills development in this process. We will also look to other contexts in which positive shifts in culture are actively taking place: EDI, healthy working lives, and research integrity. We ask what we can learn from these contexts, and how can we collaborate to make a more equitable and open research environment?

In addition to talks on the themes of research integrity, next generation metrics, and open research education & skills, there will be rapid-fire lightning talks, a poster session, and drinks reception along with plenty of opportunities to expand your network.

Registration for in-person attendance closes on May 19th and for online it’s May 24th, full details of the conference have been published.

If you would like to keep up with Open Research news, please sign up for the newsletter, and you can also follow Edinburgh Open Research on EventBrite to find out about our future events.

We look forward to welcoming you to the conference!

Kerry Miller,
Research Data Support Officer & Open Research Coordinator

 

New Open Research Tool: Open Science Framework

Awesome news! The Research Data Service has a fantastic new addition to its Open Research toolbox! Fresh from the Centre for Open Science (COS) comes our institutional membership to Open Science Framework (http://osf.io): a powerful tool for supporting staff and students at the University of Edinburgh.

OSF is a free, open platform that provides full integration and sharing across the entire data lifecycle. Among many other things, it streamlines workflows with customisable project organisation and automated version control. It also enhances collaborative research, making it easy to find and connect with other UoE users and their research projects. But wait, there’s more! OSF enables easy management of private and public aspects of a project, so sharing with project teams as well as the wider research community couldn’t be simpler; it’s ideal for sharing preprints and preregistered reports. Best of all, with centralised storage for documents, data, and code, it eliminates the need to scramble around hunting for that one file you need right now: no more trawling through email chains to recover lost data!

To launch the new platform we’ve been running Free Lunch Lunchtime sessions, with Free Lunch in the Main Library. The Centre for Research Collections were kind enough to let us use their rooms on the 6th floor, so obviously, all our attendees used the stairs and worked up a proper appetite for their Free Lunch.

The first event was held on August 30th to a packed house, or room. After the Free Lunch and a bit of professional mingling, Gretchen Gueguen from the Centre for Open Science Zoomed in to give us a brief introduction to and overview of OSF: what it is, how it works, and why it’s such an excellent addition to any research toolbox. Gretchen was followed by Emma Wilson, PhD student, UoE representative for ReproducibiliTea, and Open Research Intern extraordinaire. Emma provided the first of two user-perspectives, talking about her experience of using OSF for her projects, presentations, and posters. The second pair of boots on the ground belonged to Mark Lawson, Data Governance Manager for the Childlight project currently being run out of Moray House School of Education and Sport. Being another long time-user of OSF, as well as being a fan of such tools, Mark spoke with great enthusiasm about the use of OSF to support the data management and project management aspects of his work.

Emma Wilson presenting during the OSF introduction event in August.

The second event wasn’t quite as packed as the first, but it was still nice to see those who managed to make it through the December wind and rain. Once again, Gretchen was there to provide the introduction and overview; and Emma, likewise, returned to talk about her experience as an OSF user. This time, the afternoon was rounded off by Gillian Currie who outlined the OSF training she and Eirini Theofanidou were ready and able to deliver. Before the close of the session Gillian had secured several bookings for her training sessions. Sadly, and despite having organised the event – and the Free Lunch – RDS won’t receive any commission for these bookings.

However, we will soon be in vigorous competition with Gillian and Eirini because we’re preparing to offer OSF Winter and Summer Schools. These sessions will be delivered remotely by COS to an in-person cohort of researchers over two or three days. If all goes to plan, we may even be recording the session recordings for future use. And yes, in case you’re wondering, there will, once again, be a Free lunch for attendees.

To learn more about the University OSF membership go to: https://edin.ac/47aGU0S. Questions about OSF? Email us: data-support@ed.ac.uk.

Dr Simon Smith – Research Data Support Officer
Research Data Support, Library & University Collections

Research Data Support team and DCC to host Skills4EOSC Fellow

University of Edinburgh has been chosen as one of 12 European institutions to host sponsored short secondments for data professionals in Open Science, as part of the Skills4EOSC Horizon Europe project. Whilst the Digital Curation Centre is a partner in the Skills4EOSC project (EOSC is the European Open Science Cloud), the Research Data Support team has been asked to be the primary host for the secondment, so the ‘fellow’ can participate and engage in the team’s day-to-day activities in supporting and training researchers in an academic setting.

Promotional image for Skills4EOSC fellowship

The project aims to develop common methodologies, activities and training resources to unify the current training landscape into a collaborative and reliable ecosystem and to provide dedicated community-specific support to leverage the potential of EOSC for open and data-intensive research. A number of enquiries have already been received and plans are currently underway with Library Research Support and the Digital Curation Centre (DCC) to support the application of a European candidate to work with the team for a month in either April or July, 2024, with a deadline for the application of 31 October. More information is at https://www.skills4eosc.eu/participate/fellowship-programme.

 

New Data Visualisation Intern

It’s often said that the best way to achieve your goals is to visualise success. But what if visualisation is your goal? Then get someone clever to do it for you. That’s what we did: hired a new Data Visualisation Intern.

Henry standing on platform with natural scenery (Sidney area)

Henry Sun has joined Research Data Support for the summer to work on our Data Dashboard project. Henry is about to start his 4th year as an undergraduate, studying electronics and computer science. That’s right, he’s doing 2 degrees: our very own Henry Beauclerc. Henry also came to us with previous experience of laboratory research. Impressed? Us too, very.

Just how Henry manages to find time for anything else is a little baffling. But find it he does and with it, among other things, he watches superhero movies – Marvel for preference, obviously. And he cooks: Henry tells us that he already has special skills in Asian, especially Chinese cuisine, and now he’s learning how to bake. You can imagine how popular he’s going to be when his colleagues find out.

This internship is Henry’s first time in a professional services role and that role is to develop a dashboard that will enable us to monitor and to understand all the Open Research activity that goes on at the University of Edinburgh. Primarily, that means tracking down a range of internal and external data sources and figuring out a way to tie them all together and visualise them. And if that’s not enough, we’re hoping that Henry will be able to predict the future, or at least come up with some ideas for ongoing development of the dashboard. Exciting stuff, right? Right.

And what do we plan to do with this shiny new box of numbers? Management teams will want have a look, of course. We in Research Data Support are expecting to get a clearer and more detailed picture of the data management situation across the University: good practice, bad practice, and no practice at all. Knowing all that, especially the last two, will enable us to focus on the areas where we’re needed most. It will also be useful for our three Colleges – Arts, Humanities & Social Sciences, Science & Engineering, and Medicine & Veterinary Medicine – to see what kind of Open Research their researchers are producing. And speaking of Open Research, we’re aiming to make at least some of this data – headline numbers, etc. – available to the public via our website. It will be nice to show off all the hard work that’s going on in Open Research at Edinburgh as well as all the hard work Henry is doing for us.

Simon Smith
Research Data Support Officer
Library & University Collections