The recent announcement about initial decisions about REF 2028 noted the increased importance of research culture, people and environment. It highlighted some of the ways in which institutions and disciplinary units of assessment might be able to demonstrate improvements in this over time. UKRN understands transparency, openness, integrity and rigour to be among the key hallmarks of high quality research practice, and that they are features of a positive research culture. The UKRN Open Research Programme therefore plans to test indicators of open research, which might help institutions improve how they support open research through the provision of infrastructure, training, guidance, support, recognition and reward, and policies. In doing this, UKRN is mindful of both the recommendations and potential pitfalls in developing and using indicators, and will, among other things, aim to develop indicators that are not useful for assessing individual researchers, but instead inform institutional planning. These are not clear distinctions, though, so co-creation and evaluation will be core principles of the work.

Today, we release the second UKRN working paper, which outlines the results from the “call for priorities” for open research indicators. It shows how we have, from a larger range of possibilities, identified a small set of priorities that will be pursued in pilots with institutions and solution providers during 2023-24. It also shows how these priorities relate to the rest of the Open Research Programme. Read the working paper.