Working with us
Range of projects
Our Research Software Engineers (RSEs) have worked for a number of years with researchers across the University on a wide range of projects, from Divinity to Biology, from simple scripts to interactive databases and from short, single researcher projects to multi-year cross-disciplinary collaborations.
We have experience developing project websites, public-facing interactive web applications, mobile apps, databases for gathering and analysing data, data visualisations and more besides.
We favour open-source technologies and solutions in order to maximise the sustainability of the software developed and to enable research outputs to be shared as widely as possible.
Before the project
The earlier Research Computing can be involved in a project the better. The early consideration of the software component of a project can inform timescales, allow processes, techniques and tools to be optimised, and will result in software that better meets the needs of the project.
Our RSEs can provide assistance with writing funding applications for projects which include a software component.
The Research Computing Service prioritises those projects where the effort of named members of the team is costed in the funding award following consultation during the planning of the project. UKRI and other funders understand the importance of RSEs to research and encourage their inclusion on grants. Costs for data storage on the University network and security testing are among the other costs which may need to be considered depending on the project.
After the project
It is often desired that software created during a project, particularly public-facing websites, are kept online beyond the end of the project. Research Computing will facilitate this, but as it requires ongoing effort, we cannot commit to keeping all such applications available indefinitely.
Websites that have not had their content updated for two years (following the end of the project that created them) will be considered for archiving. Timescales may be shortened if a security or other issue necessitates significant effort to keep the site running. Principal Investigators will be consulted throughout this process.
“Archiving” here means simplifying the site – keeping the content available, but removing the ability to easily update that content and possibly losing some more advanced functionality.
If the simplified version of the site would not meet the requirements of the project funder, it will not be archived.
If significant use is being made of functionality which would be lost in the archiving process, the site will not be archived.
If the simplified version of the site would not be useful, Research Computing will liaise with the Principal Investigator on the best way forward e.g. making the underlying data available via another mechanism e.g. Pure.
University policies and guidance
All Research Computing projects are bound by the University’s policies and follow the appropriate guidance.
Data Protection must be considered at the earliest possible stage, with a Privacy Impact Assessment (PIA) completed where necessary. This will help to determine the Information Classification (PDF) of the project and the required degree of security testing. The more intensive security scanning for higher risk applications will incur a cost.
All websites and other user interfaces (e.g. mobile apps) must meet the University’s obligations with regard to accessibility.