ESRC launches opportunity to inform data infrastructure strategy

Blue, red and green fibre optical cables

A stakeholder engagement exercise is being launched by the Economic and Social Research Council to gather views to help shape its data infrastructure strategy.

The Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) funds a portfolio of data infrastructures that has developed since the inception of the council.

These infrastructures include data collections and services which are used for public benefit by:

  • academic researchers in social and interdisciplinary sciences
  • UK and devolved governments at all levels
  • the third sector.

What ESRC’s strategy will do

The council now intends to launch a new data infrastructure strategy in 2022.

This will guide the future development of ESRC’s investment in data infrastructure.

Among other adaptations, it will:

  • set out guiding principles for ESRC’s new and existing investments
  • create aligned objectives to maximise collaboration, integration, innovation and user-focused services
  • enable flexible responses to new funding opportunities and changed priorities
  • define a clear impact strategy supported by effective communications and engagement.

Opportunity to engage and influence

The stakeholder engagement exercise will gather inputs that will inform the development of the data infrastructure strategy by:

  • allowing users and beneficiaries of social science data infrastructure to express their views
  • identifying priorities, challenges, constraints and opportunities which could impact the development and delivery of the strategy.

ESRC welcomes contributions from interested parties via email between 2 August and 10 September.

Advancing our understanding

Professor Alison Park, ESRC Interim Executive Chair said:

ESRC supports a suite of research data infrastructures which advance understanding of people, organisations and the world around us.

Examples include our world-leading longitudinal studies and resources that help researchers access data.

ESRC’s new data infrastructure strategy will reflect our vision of what social science data infrastructure needs to look like in the future, ensuring it takes account of changing societal issues, technological change and shifting researcher needs.

We welcome input to inform this work.

Social science data infrastructure system

ESRC is the main public funder of social science data infrastructure in the UK, providing over £200 million investment over the last five years.

These data infrastructures include data collections, and the facilities and services which enable them to be fully, ethically and safely used to achieve excellence in research and innovation within ESRC’s remit.

Further information

Ask a question about this exercise

Email: datainfrastructure@esrc.ukri.org

Top image: Credit: courtneyk/GettyImages

NOTE Council web content is being transitioned to this website – let us know if you have feedback or would like to help us test new developments.