UK e-Infrastructure Academic User Community Forum

15 April 2013, UCL Bloomsbury Campus, Roberts G06 Sir Ambrose Fleming LT

The UK e-Infrastructure Academic User Community Forum was created to maintain and grow the community of UK researchers who use computers of any shape or size in their research, regardless of discipline or domain.

The community was central to the development of the Strategy for the UK Research Computing Ecosystem (Oct 2011), which largely influenced the Department for Business, Innovation, and Skills (BIS) publication A Strategic Vision for UK e-Infrastructure. This resulted in the Government investment of £165M in UK e-infrastructure, helped to bring the e-Infrastructure Leadership Council (ELC), co-chaired by David Willetts, Minister for Universities and Science, and Professor Dominic Tildesley, into existence, and was influential in the recent Government investment of £189M in “eight great technologies” including big data.

The purpose of the Forum meetings is to give the e-infrastructure community regular updates on developments in the UK e-Infrastructure space and within ELC, to provide a forum for discussions about the community's future, and to allow the e-infrastructure community the opportunity to influence Government and help define e-infrastructure policy in the UK.

The core themes for this Forum meeting include:

1. Facilitating and funding sustainability
Sustainability of software and skills are vital to maximising the potential of the existing hardware, but what mechanisms can we put in place to facilitate sustainability? In addition, all of this relies upon funding for running costs, support staff, facilitation, training, and programmers. Is it reasonable to expect research councils to shoulder the burden, or should Government be expected to provide recurrent funding?

2. Engaging new users, and movement between the levels of e-infrastructure
We may have an improving e-infrastructure in hardware terms, rather like a network of minor roads, main roads and motorways, but many users or would-be users still feel that there are big 'Halt' signs at each junction. How can we facilitate academia, industry, NHS, and the non-profit sector to understand the potential of big data and take advantage of all that the existing infrastructure has to offer, and is it possible that the role of the current regional-level facilities could grow over time, to facilitate the easier migration of research and researchers between the levels of e-infrastructure?



Introductory Speakers

Prof Peter Coveney, UCL, e-Infrastructure Leadership Council
Introduction [Presentation]

Prof Michael Wilson, Science and Technology Facilities Council, Secretary to the e-Infrastructure Leadership Council
UK e-Infrastructure Leadership Council Update [Abstract] [Presentation]

Dr Jeremy Yates, UCL, Distributed Research utilising Advanced Computing (DiRAC)
Snapshot of the UK e-Infrastructure Ecosystem [Abstract] [Presentation] [National E-Infrastructure Survey]

Sustainability Session

Chair: Prof David Britton, University of Glasgow

Sean McGuire, Intel, e-Infrastructure Leadership Council
Dr Adrian Wander, Science and Technology Facilities Council
The Scientific Computing Department and the Hartree Centre [Abstract] [Presentation]

Prof Mike Payne, University of Cambridge, e-Infrastructure Leadership Council
It’s the software ......... [Abstract] [Presentation]
Dr Kenji Takeda, Microsoft
Software in Science [Abstract]

Dr Simon Hettrick, Software Sustainability Institute
The provision of training for e-infrastructure users and potential users [Abstract] [Presentation]
Dr Gudmund Høst, Nordic e-Infrastructure Collaboration
Support and skills training for the use of e-Infrastructure [Abstract] [Presentation]

Engagement Session

Chair: Prof Charles Laughton, University of Nottingham

Dr Ian Dix, AstraZeneca, e-Infrastructure Leadership Council
Infrastructures to support translational science: IMI & eTRIKS [Abstract] [Presentation]
Prof Dawn Jutla, Saint Mary’s University
Big Data Readiness and Engagement: Targeting Women, Workforce Development, Entrepreneurship, and Society [Abstract] [Presentation]

Non-profit Sector
Dr Janet Seed, Research Councils UK
Integrating e-infrastructure [Abstract] [Presentation]
Prof Jonathan Hirst, University of Nottingham
Mid-Plus: a regional centre of excellence for computational science, mathematics and engineering [Abstract] [Presentation]
Phil Butcher, Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute, The Crick Institute
Embracing e-Infrastructure [Abstract] [Presentation]

Dr Ken Lunn, Department of Health Informatics Directorate
Information Standards – Joining the Future [Abstract]
Dr James Thomas, University College London Hospital
e-Infrastructure in the delivery of Patient Care, Education and Research & Development [Abstract] [Presentation]

Start time: Mon, 15/04/2013 - 09:00
End time: Mon, 15/04/2013 - 19:30