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The Research Software Encyclopedia: a community framework to define research software

Sochat, V., May, N., Cosden, I., Martinez-Ortiz, C. and Bartholomew, S. ORCID: (2022) The Research Software Encyclopedia: a community framework to define research software. Journal of Open Research Software. ISSN 2049-9647

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To link to this item DOI: 10.5334/jors.359


The Research Software Encyclopedia is a community driven, open source strategy to define the term “research software” in different contexts. It consists of several elements: a base library to manage a database of software, criteria and taxonomy items that can be used to answer questions about the software in the database, and several ways for an interested party to interact. A community database is stored in version control (GitHub), and by way of providing and updating this database, the Research Software Encyclopedia takes a strategy of small contributions over time to grow a valuable resource. Using a community-driven open source approach offers a number of advantages over attempting to derive a single, holistic definition for research software. First, it takes into account the context under which the definition is considered. Second, community and scoped contributions to specific components of the task are easy. Third, it provides a resource that can be extended to other use cases. Finally, this initiative creates a solution that requires no grants or other funding to maintain, increasing its ability to grow, adapt, and evolve over time.

Item Type:Article
Divisions:Science > School of Mathematical, Physical and Computational Sciences > NCAS
Science > School of Mathematical, Physical and Computational Sciences > Department of Meteorology
ID Code:105313
Publisher:Ubiquity Press


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