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ReSA News: October 2020

ReSA’s three focus areas: Spotlight on Infrastructure

ReSA has three main focus areas: policy, people and infrastructure. This month’s newsletter highlights ReSA taskforces in the infrastructure space, particularly on standards and guidelines.

ReSA is a joint convenor of the FAIR 4 Research Software Working Group (FAIR4RS WG) with the Research Data Alliance (RDA) and FORCE11. FAIR4RS WG is enabling coordination of a range of existing community-led discussions on how to define and effectively apply FAIR principles to research software, to continue to advance the aims of the open science movement.

ReSA is also leading the development of a FAIR 4 Research Software Roadmap to plan a broad integration across the software landscape of the FAIR principles for software (once developed by FAIR4RS WG). The 2018 European Commission report, Turning FAIR into Reality, concludes that FAIR digital objects (including software) need to be supported by metrics, incentives, skills and FAIR services that provide persistent identifiers, metadata specifications, stewardship and repositories, actionable policies and Output Management Plans.

All of these need to be created for FAIR software, to complement the significant FAIR initiatives that primarily encompass data (and those emerging in other areas such as workflows and training materials), and to leverage the efforts already underway to enable this for software. The FAIR4RS Roadmap aims to coordinate development of research software initiatives in areas such as: indicators, metrics, maturity models and certification; curriculums and competence centres, career profiles and reward structures; certification of FAIR services; interoperability frameworks; identifiers; metadata; and policy change.

This work aims to enable:

  • Development of the FAIR for research software roadmap to identify key stakeholders and guide further investment
  • Mapping of existing FAIR for research software projects into a longer-term framework to improve strategic alignment and potential collaborators/leads for different parts of the roadmap
  • Collaboration between FAIR data and software communities to maximise knowledge sharing
  • Identification of roadmap elements that are specific to (or that apply in a different way to) research software and that have not been covered by FAIR for data initiatives
  • Identification of opportunities for existing FAIR initiatives to incorporate a focus on FAIR research software

Updates on this work will be available at:

There will be many events in 2021 where the community can get information, provide feedback, and become involved in this work, including the Collaborations Workshop 2021 (CW21) from 30 March to 1 April 2021. eResearch Australasia are already hosting a discussion on 23 October 2020 on how RSE-AUNZ could be involved in leading these discussions in Australia, and seeks to identify local examples of best practice in creating FAIR research software.

ReSA Steering Committee call for nominations

The ReSA Steering Committee is calling for nominations for 4 new members of the Steering Committee in 2021. The ReSA Steering Committee is responsible for the strategic direction of ReSA. The role of the Steering Committee members is to provide strategic inputs to the development of ReSA, to achieve the ReSA vision that research software is recognised and valued as a fundamental and vital component of research worldwide, and the mission to bring research software communities together to collaborate on the advancement of research software. ReSA Steering Committee Members are welcome from a broad diversity of individuals, disciplines of study, geographies, career stages and backgrounds, and are expected to have a broad understanding of, and a demonstrated commitment to research software or another relevant area such as open science. If you are interested in nominating yourself or someone else to be a ReSA Steering Committee member, then please fill out this form by Fri 13 November 2020. If you would like further information then please contact Michelle Barker, Director, ReSA.

Community news

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ReSA is a community of influencers and members of major research software communities, programs, organisations and individuals. ReSA’s vision is that research software be recognised and valued as a fundamental and vital component of research worldwide. The ReSA mission is to bring research software communities together to collaborate on the advancement of research software. ReSA is a fiscally sponsored project of Code for Science and Society.