Below is a list of reproducibility-related events happening in or around Oxford. At the bottom of this page you’ll also find some ongoing initiatives, as well as a list of past events. For each of our activities, please follow our Code of Conduct which relies on the UKRN Code of Conduct.
Online Study Groups
In the coming months, we will run online study groups.
We continuously collate online training resources (feel free to use, share, and populate), and people among us have volunteered to organise study groups around some of those resources.
To join our community: please subscribe to our RROx mailing list. In your welcome email, you will be invited to our Slack workspace and then you will be able to choose to join any of the public channels described below and to create new ones!
ReproducibiliTea organised by the Oxford Experimental Psychology team (welcoming everyone from Oxford and beyond!) is resuming its journal club format and is available every week online! Sign up to the reproducibilitea mailing list or visit the ReproducibiliTea website. You can also continue the discussion over to the dedicated RROx Slack channel for ReproducibiliTea attendees.
Oxford Free(Libre) Open Source Software (OxFOSS) meetups is the result of a collaboration between researchers from RROx & Oxford Research Software Engineering (OxRSE) interested in software freedom. OxFOSS will organise informal virtual meetups/lunches to discuss an article or a presentation about current free software practices in academia, tools, ethics, etc. If you are interested, please subscribe to the OxFOSS mailing list!
Statistical Rethinking book club is meeting weekly to discuss the book Statistical Rethinking: A Bayesian course by Richard McElreath (available as eBook through the Bodleian with Oxford SSO) and its associated online course recording. To participate in this group and get all the necessary information, join the dedicated RROx Slack channel.
Computer Skills book club is meeting every two weeks to discuss the book Computing skills for biologists by Stefano Allesina & Madlen Wilmes (available as eBook through the Bodleian with Oxford SSO) and its associated online exercises. Join the dedicated RROx Slack channel if interested!
More to come! And even more if you make a call for a new study group by creating another slack channel!
Reproducible Research Oxford Launch
Reproducible Research Oxford (RROx) formal launch event took place on
Monday 13 January 2020 from 1.30-6pm at St John’s College
We published in brief report of the event in Research Fortnight
As well as introducing RROx, and having brainstorming sessions with the audience , we had three invited speakers:
• Claire Fraser (Senior Higher Education Policy Adviser, Research England) he role of open research and responsible research assessment to addressing issues of research integrity
This event was well attended with over 120 attendees spanning the 4 Divisions of the University of Oxford and including research support staff from the Bodleian Libraries, IT services, and Research Services.
Video recordings and slides for each presentation can be found on our OSF repository.
Project TIER Faculty Development Spring '19
Project TIER’s Faculty Development Workshops are designed for college and university faculty who are interested in integrating principles of research transparency and reproducibility into courses on quantitative methods and/or the supervision of student research.
The workshops introduce participants to protocols for conducting and documenting empirical research that ensure the reproducibility of all computational results, and then present a range of pedagogical strategies and curricular resources for teaching these methods to students in a variety of educational settings.
The objective is to help instructors develop plans for teaching reproducible research practices that will be feasible and effective in their particular contexts, so that they are fully prepared to implement the methods presented at the workshops when they return to their home institutions.
Karen Sandler from software freedom conservancy
Karen Sandler will be speaking about her work at software freedom conservancy on February 5 at 16:00 (Lecture Theatre B, Department of Computer Science)
Finding Our Path To Digital Autonomy: Exploring the Relationship Between Tech Ethics, Privacy and Software Freedom
We increasingly live in a world where technology is embedded in every aspect of our lives. From medical devices to in-home security systems, to oral medication with sensors embedded, much of our personal information is broadcast out of our control with minimal real security on the devices we use. There’s often no option to even switch off connectivity of our devices and have them remain functional. We are regularly asked to accept terms of service that no reasonable person could read and understand. It’s becoming evident that:
- Medical and other assistive technologies aren’t optional
- It is becoming increasingly expensive to avoid connectivity
- The most vulnerable are the most exploited by tech with terrible privacy and no control
- Current policy does not ensure the existence of any user-respecting alternatives
While many are finally starting to wake up to the problematic state of our technology, the focus has been on merely protecting private information, not appreciable control over our digital destinies. We know that all of the technology we rely on is likely vulnerable, so let’s make sure we’ll be able to fix problems when they arise. Let’s treat users of technology as partners rather than just consumers. This talk will explore the current state of personal technology and the overlapping but separate issues that need to fall into place to assure we have digital autonomy when we need it most.
Karen is the executive director of Conservancy. She is known as a cyborg lawyer for her advocacy for free software, particularly in relation to the software on medical devices. Prior to joining Conservancy, she was executive director of the GNOME Foundation. Before that, she was general counsel of the Software Freedom Law Center. Karen co-organizes Outreachy, the award-winning outreach program for women globally and for people of color who are underrepresented in US tech. Karen is a recipient of the O’Reilly Open Source Award and cohost of the oggcast Free as in Freedom.
Karen received her law degree from Columbia Law School in 2000, where she was a James Kent Scholar and co-founder of the Columbia Science and Technology Law Review. Karen received her bachelor’s degree in engineering from The Cooper Union.
Wellcome Cafe Culture
We would like to discuss with you our current research culture and ways to improve it!
We will be hosting a Wellcome Trust Café Culture in St John’s College from 5pm to 6.30pm on the 5th of March (room tbc).
Please sign up on this eventbrite page!
This will be an opportunity to talk about the challenges we face in research culture, reflect on what a better culture would look like, and, most importantly, propose solutions for how Wellcome and other parts of the system could change.
Wellcome’s previous survey and interviews with researchers revealed a lot about our working culture and the kinds of problems we face. Read the findings. Now, we have the chance to play our part and propose solutions!
Before our discussion: Take a particular issue of research culture that you think needs to improve, and think about ideas for how to achieve that. What could individual researchers, research leaders, institutions, funders, professional bodies or others do? How could different kinds of individuals and organisations reward, require and support good practices and behaviours?
Some of the topics involved will touch on deeply personal experiences and may be difficult to discuss. Everyone in the group should be considerate and respectful, and we hope you feel able to speak openly. You might also want to make yourself aware of appropriate sources of support available at your institution.
Here is a list of ongoing initiatives related to RROx.
Oxford Code Review Network
Ever wanted a fresh pair of eyes to look at your code, or to track down a bug? Would you like to get feedback on your research software from fellow research programmers? Want to get in touch with other research programmers at the University of Oxford?
The Oxford Code Review Network (OxCRN) aims to make it easy for researchers at all levels, from students to senior professors, to engage in regular code reviews, both as reviewers and reviewees. Whatever your research field or favourite programming language, code reviews will make your research software better; not only free of bugs, but also more readable and maintainable, making your research more open and reproducible. It’s also a great opportunity to engage with colleagues from other departments and Divisions!
OxCRN is beginner friendly: you don’t need to be a veteran programmer to review code, and a basic knowledge of the relevant programming language will do. Whatever your level of experience, reviewing code is perhaps the best way to sharpen and widen your software skills.
Simply visit https://github.com/OxfordCodeReviewNet/forum and get started today!
Oxford Free Open Source Software
Free(Libre) Open Source Software (OxFOSS) meetups are held regularly to discuss free software. Subscribe to the OxFOSS mailing list to stay informed!
This initiative aims to bring together people with an interest in software freedom and open source, particularly in an academic context. Meetings are a mix of informal discussion and invited talks.
During Michaelmas term, meetings will be held every other Monday at 3PM UK time.
- 19/10 3PM-4.30PM - Discussion: Intro to OxFOSS + Practical reasons for using free/open source software in academia
- 02/11 3PM-4PM - Seminar by Rowan Wilson and Andrew Katz: Licensing research software: public domain? copyleft? permissive?
- 16/11 3PM-4PM - Discussion: What can we do as a local FOSS community to advocate for FOSS at Oxford?
- 30/11 3PM-4PM - TBC/TBD
- Practical reasons for using free/open source software in academia
19/10 3PM-4.30PM - Discussion
Advocating for the use of free and open source software is often made difficult by the fact that proprietary alternatives are deemed more convenient: either because they come with a larger set of features, or because they are already well established in one’s community. In this first OxFOSS event we will discuss what the practical reasons are for using FOSS, with a focus on academic research and scholarship. Free software is in fact widely used by many researchers for specialized tasks: R, scipy/numpy, jupyter, LaTeX… What are the reasons behind this popularity? Can these extend to other free software projects competing with proprietary alternatives for more common office tasks? What are examples of when, and why, you choose to use a free software tool instead of a non-free alternative?
- Licensing research software: public domain? copyleft? permissive?
Invited talk by Rowan Wilson, Oxford IT Services Research Support team Leader, and Andrew Katz, Managing Partner and Head of Tech and IP at Moorcrofts
In many cases, licensing your research software is necessary for anyone to use, read, modify and/or redistribute it. Licensing software as free/open source is often the preferred option for research project, so as to facilitate knowledge transfer and collaboration. But what type of license should you opt for? Copyleft? Permissive? Should you waive all rights and release your software in the public domain? We discuss the choice of free software license and its relation to intellectual property, with a focus on research software written at the University of Oxford.
- What can we do as a local FOSS community to advocate locally for FOSS?
16/11 3PM-4PM - Discussion
OxFOSS aims to create and foster a friendly and inclusive community of people concerned with issues regarding software freedom and open source. A longer term objective of OxFOSS is to rely on this community to advocate for free software in broader circles, for instance to academics who have not been exposed to these issues.
In this session, we reflect collectively on our options to move forward as a community and advocate for the use of free software around us in Oxford. Possible topics for discussion include – Possible events and topics aimed at academics that are not familiar with the issues of free/open source software. What are your preferred way of introducing these issues? – Oxford is a large, somewhat peculiar University. Who to target? Individual research groups, departments? – Oxford is not limited to the University. Should we broaden the focus of OxFOSS outside of academia and be inclusive to the local community? What would be a suitable course of action?
Software and data carpentry
Software and data carpentry workshops are organised during the year. Follow the Reproducible Research Oxford twitter page to receive updates on when the next workshop will be held!
Oxford-Berlin Summer School
podcast and journal club
ReproducibiliTea journal clubs are a grassroots initiative for researchers to discuss articles and ideas about improving their work through open research practices.
During Michaelmas term 2020, you can join either or both of the following groups which will meet in alternated weeks, by subscribing to their mailing lists:
- clinical-reproducibilitea is co-organised by a team of early career researchers from NDORMS, Primary Care, and Psychiatry. Main contact: James Smith
- reproducibilitea, the funder group, is based in Experimental Psychology. Main contact: Matt Jaquiery
Both groups welcome researchers of all career stages and disciplines.
Follow the twitter page for worlwide updates!
Other past events can be found on the archive of this website.