Soup to Nuts: A Panel Discussion on Implementing a Research Life Cycle in the Design of Research Services

Gavin Kennedy1, Vicki Picasso2, Dr Cameron McLean3, Louise Wheeler4, Siobhann McCafferty5

1Queensland Cyber Infrastructure Foundation, Brisbane, Australia

2University of Newcastle, Newcastle, Australia,

3University of Auckland, Auckland, New Zealand,

4University of Technology Sydney, Sydney, Australia,  

5Australian Access Federation and Data Life Cycle Framework, Brisbane, Australia,


This is a joint presentation and panel discussion that envisions an implementation of a “Research Life Cycle Framework” based on the capture of minimal research activity descriptions, the integration of multiple information systems and repositories and the provision and orchestration of research services. With a ‘researcher-centric’ design, such a platform would provide users with a complete set of services from research planning (the soup) , through research execution, to reporting,  publishing and archival (the nuts). It would provide a consistent access point that supports the basic actions of research and inquiry, while simultaneously providing better management and reporting tools – resulting in improved quality, integrity, impact, and effectiveness/efficiency of research. That is, it works for all the stakeholders in the research ecosystem – a natural benefit of adopting a systemic/holistic life cycle view.

This is more than a thought experiment or an aspirational vision as this panel has come together through the realisation that the working components of such a platform already exist: University of Auckland’s Research Hub(1) is an established actionable service directory; University of Technology Sydney’s Provisioner(2) is a pluggable service catalog framework; ReDBox and Mint(3) provide the integration tools, workflows and user workspaces to support the researcher; and DLCF RAiDs and Group IDs(4) provide an identity and resource sharing framework to tie multiple disparate services to different groups of people. Universities such as University of Auckland, University of Newcastle and University of Technology Sydney are already considering how to develop this model and leverage these existing services. A further opportunity is for a national level platform through which national services can be provisioned, larger institutions can integrate at the level they require, and smaller institutions could benefit from accessing the complete spectrum of Research Life Cycle services “in the cloud”.

As a panel session this will provide the eResearch community the opportunity to reflect on this framework and assist the proposers to validate some of their assumptions. For example, a key question to be addressed through this forum is how do we ensure we are truly enabling research activities with the design of our services rather than just creating research management systems, or systems for managing disconnected fragments of the research process?

Intended audience

This panel will be of interest to national eResearch strategists, eResearch managers, university research office managers, data librarians and technical staff. It will describe how the architecture of the proposed platform supports the research life cycle and how it could integrate with institutional systems. It does not assume any technical knowledge, so we encourage developers, administrators and strategists to attend.


  1. Introducing Provisioner: Accessed 22 June, 2018
  2. Accessed 22 June, 2018
  3. Accessed 22 June, 2018


Gavin Kennedy ( is the manager of Data Innovation Services at Queensland Cyber Infrastructure Foundation and leads the team responsible for ReDBox development and support.

Vicki Picasso ( is Senior Librarian, Research Support Services at the University of Newcastle.

Dr Cameron McLean ( is a Research and Education Enabler and Research IT Specialist at the Centre for eResearch, University of Auckland.

Louise Wheeler manages the research integrity environment for academics at UTS. This includes the development and implementation of policy, education and training, and the procedural framework for upholding responsible research practices. Louise’s role also extends to the investigation of integrity breaches, as required under the Australian Code for the Responsible Conduct of Research.

Siobhann McCafferty ( is Project Manager for the Data Life Cycle Framework project, supported by ARDC, AARNet and the Australian Access Federation.

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