The Software Sustainability Institute is a national facility for building better software, founded in 2010. It provides guidance, training, tools, services and other resources to advance good practices for developing research software. These include a software evaluation service; guides for researchers, developers and managers; and data and analysis on research software. The SSI runs workshops and initiatives to support the development of communities of practice, including the SSI Fellowship programme for developing research software advocates and providing support for the Society of Research Software Engineering. It is the UK coordinator for Carpentries training courses on foundational coding and data science skills for researchers.
The mission of the SSI is cultivating better, more sustainable, research software to enable world-class research (“Better software, better research”). In 2018, it was awarded funding from all seven UKRI research councils to cement its status as the world-leading hub for research software practice. It also collaborates with organisations and individuals from around the world to address pressing topics including software citation and credit, software preservation, and equality, diversity and inclusion in research software.
Building on experience and expert understanding of the state of research software in the UK, the work of the SSI focuses around four objectives:
nurturing the growth of communities of practice to foster the sharing of expertise across the entire research community,
conducting research to provide insight into the use of software in research,
continuing enabling widespread adoption of research software practices, and
offering training and guidance to help build a capable researcher community and increase the recognition of software in research.
The SSI is operated by the universities of Edinburgh (lead), Manchester, Oxford and Southampton.
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