Open and reproducible research

The Research Support team can offer advice and support on a range of topics that relate to good research practices, open scholarship, and reproducibility.

To talk further about any of the areas listed below, please email researchsupport@it.ox.ac.uk.

Reproducible research

There are many reasons why published research findings can be incorrect, misleading, or just insufficient to allow others to reproduce the results.  Reproducible Research Oxford (RROx) is the local network of the UK Reproducibility Network, focused on advancing the open research agenda at Oxford and improving research integrity. Members of the Research Support team contribute to RROx activities in various ways. In particular we are happy to talk about publishing datasets and the code with papers. We can also discuss how the choice of tools and technologies (such as software) can increase the accessibility and value of your research.

LabArchives Electronic Lab Notebook (ELN) service

Successful research and publication will always depend on good record-keeping.  The LabArchives Electronic Lab Notebook (ELN) is a web-based service is available to all those with Oxford Single Sign-On (SSO).

We are happy to discuss getting you and your group started with an ELN, or how to take advantage of the options for sharing and collaboration.

Interactive tools for coding and data analysis

Tools like Jupyter notebooks and RStudio are a great for interactive data analysis and for demonstrating concepts in teaching and publications.

They can be central to many reproducible and open workflows. If you would like to discuss the range of options for training, sharing, and usage, get in touch.

Data visualisation

Getting from raw data to an image is often the best way to aid understanding of your research. Choosing the right types of plot and which elements to visualise can be vital to getting information across. We are happy to discuss best practices and tools for plotting your data, as well as options for organising bespoke training or finding existing learning resources.

We can also advise on options for hosting interactive data apps, including the Oxford server for R-Shiny apps, which underpins the Interactive Data Network (IDN).

Free and open source software

Research groups regularly create software to support their work, often as part of funded research projects. But what happens afterwards?  Our team has extensive experience with working with research groups to make their software more sustainable (helping it to continue to be available, improved, and supported in the future). This can be achieved in a range of ways, including by building open source communities that can continue to develop and maintain the software.

We do this through consultations with researchers and software developers, working on community planning and outreach, and providing specialist advice on topics such as licensing and intellectual property.

Working with us can be as quick and simple as a short question enquiry about a software license, or may involve a longer term engagement where we provide support and mentoring.

Open data and licensing

What kind of licence should I choose when making my research data available? Do I need to seek express permission to reuse something in my work?

Issues around intellectual property,  sharing datasets, and the reuse of software components crop up all the time, and can be hard to resolve alongside already crowded schedules.  They will become more common as more researchers and funding bodies understanding the value of data and code beyond a paper.

Within our team we have over a decade of experience of helping academic researchers deal with these issues, and are happy to help and provide training.

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