Research Software Sustainability

Without software, modern research would not be possible. This report recommends practices of software sustainability to minimise the risks of reliability and reproducibility of research.

1 October 2015 - 3 March 2016,  00:00 - 00:00,  Berlin, Germany

RSS Workshop Oct 1 01

The report introduces software sustainability, provides definitions, clearly demonstrates that software is not the same as data and illustrates aspects of sustainability in the software lifecycle. The recommendations state that improving software sustainability requires a number of changes: some technical and others societal, some small and others significant. We must start by raising awareness of researchers' reliance on software. This goal will become easier if we recognise the valuable contribution that software makes to research and reward those people who invest their time into developing reliable and reproducible software. 

The adoption of software has led to significant advances in research. But if we do not change our research practices, the continued rise in software use will be accompanied by a rise in retractions. Ultimately, anyone who is concerned about the reliability and reproducibility of research should be concerned about software sustainability.

Beside highlighting the benefits of software sustainability and addressing the societal and technical barriers to software sustainability, the report provides access to expertise in software sustainability and outlines the role of funders. The report concludes with a short landscape of national activities in Europe and outside Europe. As a result of the workshop steps will be explored to establish European coordination and cooperation of national initiatives.

Improving software sustainability requires a number of changes: some technical and others societal, some small and others significant. We must start by raising awareness of researchers' reliance on software. This goal will become easier if we recognise the valuable contribution that software makes to research

Workshop and events

Day One: Thursday 1st October
  • Welcome and Introduction
  • Presentations: The perspectives and Cases
  • Presentations: Researcher perspective and National Situations
  • Taking Stock: Listing the findings, discussing commonalities, problems, challenges, solutions, results
  • Taking Stock: Clustering the findings - List common issues either under AREA I (‘software archiving/long term preservation’) or AREA II (‘pre-software-usage challenges’)
Day 2: Friday 2nd October
  • Discuss common issues and address: a. General approaches to solve, specificity? b. Cooperation between (similar) problem owners? c. Why is it that the problem is not yet solved? d. Alternatives for solutions not tried before?
  • Area I: ‘software archiving/long term preservation’ (chair: Brian Matthews, reporter: Stefan Winkler-Nees)
  • Area II: ‘dynamic-software-usage challenges’ (chair: Neil Hue Chong, reporter: Andreas Raabe)
  • Discuss Area III (Roles and responsibilities) e. Who could/who are needed to improve? f. Why are they not doing that, how to change? g. How could such changes be made to happen? (chair: Matthew Dovey)
  • Conclude: What does the outcome represent, implications: Findings and conclusions, Areas to work on (and by who), Is there a role for KE (chair: Peter Doorn)
  • Next steps, evaluation, close

Key findings / outcome report download

Research Software Sustainability: Report on Knowledge Exchange workshop
3 March 2016

Research Software Sustainability: Report on Knowledge Exchange workshop

Purpose: Report

File type: PDF

Download

A collaboration between

  • csc-it center for science
  • deff
  • dfg
  • jisc
  • surf