Research Life Cycle – progress, opportunities and impacts


We plan to update you regularly on the Research Life Cycle programme so you can keep fully up to date with progress and, more importantly, find out how you can be involved and contribute to the project.

The Research Life Cycle (RLC) aims to deliver uplift in management and support of Research within the University to support the goal of world class research. This will be done through a set of targeted substantial investments to provide streamlined research support and upgrade in the e-Research infrastructure of the University.  An outline budget of £15M over 5 years has been set.

In order to maintain user support at current levels, the University has opted to bring in outside effort to help us deliver on a series of works to document our current offerings, identify gaps, develop our options and put together a business case for investment.

This project is split into three interrelated but separate streams of work:

  1.  e-Research Infrastructure – a combination and interworking of technology (hardware and software), resources (data, services, digital libraries), communications (protocols, access rights and networks), and the people and organisational structures needed to support modern, internationally leading collaborative research
  2. Research Data Life Cycle (RDLC)
    1. Data creation and deposit
    2. Management of active data
    3. Data repositories and archives
    4. Data catalogues and registries

The scoping work for these two streams are out to tender and will be awarded early January.

  1. Research Life Cycle, a holistic perspective across the University of administrative services and processes that support research. The work to define this has been awarded to PA Consulting.

Research IT is undertaking the management and delivery of the Research Life Cycle Programme of work on behalf of the research community. The current state of work will:

  1. Identify, and define the current offering including strengths, weaknesses and shortcomings. It will also capture the current knowledge, aspirations and requirements of the research community.
  2. Develop an investment and options model for the University to consider, specifying how the suggested solutions address University and academic community aspirations.
  3. Develop a business case for investment over a 5-year implementation plan.

The consultants will be on campus from January through April 2018 and will be meeting lots of staff and researchers in both 1-2-1 meetings and workshops. The project plans to book as many of these as possible over the next few weeks, so that there are not lots of short term calls on people’s time.

If you would like to be involved in the Research Life Cycle please contact us.

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