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December 17, 2011 / Kirsty Pitkin

JISC Future of Research Conference 2010

  1. Opening Plenary

    Professor Rick Trainor, Vice Chancellor and principal of King’s College London, presented the opening plenary as an introduction to the main conference themes: institutional reputation, efficiency and effectiveness, and collaboration.
    Trainor emphasised that UK higher education must use technology to increase its efficiency and effectiveness and enable collaboration, as well as to demonstrate its importance and competitiveness with the rest of the world.
  2. Trainor: On today of all days, we have some important work to do at this conference #jiscres10
  3. Reputation

    The first theme under consideration was that of institutional reputation.  
    Professor Dame Julia Goodfellow from the University of Kent opened the discussion in her plenary presentation by highlighting the strength of the UK’s international reputation for research….
  4. Topic Summary and Tips:
  5. Audience Responses:
  6. “‘effectiveness’ (not just efficiency) and ‘communication’ are key to maintaining research reputation” – julia goodfellow at #jiscres10
  7. Academic lift thrives on giving away knowledge in return for reputational capital #jiscres10
  8. Reputation Workshops

    After Julia Goodfellow’s plenary presentation, delegates split into three workshop groups to focus on specific aspects of the theme.
    A. Attract the best and save costs: centralise your IT support for research

    B. Protect your reputation? Manage your research data well

    C. What do reputation and branding mean for institutions?

    Session B was live streamed from the main conference hall.  A recording of this session is available at
  • Audience Responses:
  • “Half of researchers want to store data forever” says Takeda. Only half ? Southampton’s lucky! #jiscres10
  • Data management planning tool – #jiscres10
  • Efficiency

    The theme of Efficiency was introduced by Professor Martin Hall, Vice Chancellor, University of Salford.

    In his plenary, Hall made a strong case for Open Access as a more effective way of working….
  • Topic Summary and Tips:
  • Audience Responses:
  • Hall: stresses the important of network assets, interactions/collaborations between institutions #jiscres10
  • Make money not by licensing and IP but by adding value to open access data, says Hall #jiscres10
  • Hall: “we have people whose citations have simply gone through the roof as result of OA repository” #jiscres10
  • Collaboration

    The final theme – collaboration – was introduced by Professor Paul Curran, Vice Chancellor, City University London.
    In his presentation, he highlighted the paradox that universities are inherently collaborative places, but the academics within them compete.  He discussed how collaboration is possible within a competitive environment….
  • Topic Summary and Tips:
  • Audience Responses:
  • “uk universities more expensive than german companies as european research partners” – comment from audience at #jiscres10
  • I wonder what the “right support mechanisms for collaborative research” are? #jiscres10
  • Collaboration Workshops

    Following Paul Curran’s presentation, delegates split up for the final time to discuss the practical issues in these workshop sessions:
    A. Research beyond institutional boundaries

    B. The ‘open road to Competitiveness’

    C. Collaboration: growing benefit or necessary evil?

    Session C was live streamed and recorded.  The recording can be found at
  • Audience Responses:
  • The language issue arises again – this time between commercial & research world. Timescales also very different #jiscres10
  • Scots model very interesting; relationship between HE, government & industry closer. National identity stronger; UK regions less #jiscres10
  • Final Plenary

    Sarah Porter, Head of Innovation at JISC gave the final plenary presentation, in which she discussed some of JISC’s work in each of the key areas under discussion throughout the day: reputation, efficiency and collaboration.

    Porter also looked to the future, outlining some of the projects that are currently planned to help support institutions as they look to use technology to address these issues….
  • Audience Responses:
  • Porter: Use collective bargaining power, good deals for the sector; implement shared infrastructure; differentiate locally #jiscres10
  • Sarah Porter observes that many things JISC provides are envy of the world (very true in my experience) #jiscres10
  • Panel Discussion

    The conference concluded with with a panel discussion chaired by Professor Paul Webley, Director and Principal of SOAS.
    The panel featured the keynote speakers: Martin Hall, Paul Curran and Sarah Porter.  They were joined by Jonathan Adams and Professor Geoff Rogers.
  • Audience Responses:
  • Panel, Hall: Condemns the lack of real policy for HE, innovation, research etc (policy set by unaccountable think-tanks)… #jiscres10
  • Porter mentions VAT as challenge to shared svcs. True, but shouldn’t be for ones which are tech-heavy & staff-light & low mark-up #jiscres10
  • Post-Event Resources

    Recordings of the keynote presentations and selected workshops are available at
    The speakers’ slides are all available on Slideshare at
    Further information, including top tips for senior managers are available at the conference resource site at
    Discussion about this event on Twitter was aggregated using the #jiscres10 hash tag.  The full archive of this discussion is available at
  • Ongoing Debate

    The debate around the future of research is wide-ranging and stimulating.  The conference organisers will be gathering together relevant links at
    If you write or encounter an online resource that is pertinent to the issues described here, then please tweet it to @JISCEvents or email to share the resource with the rest of the community.
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