The eScience Lab research group is led by Professor Carole Goble. The group is based at the Department of Computer Science, The University of Manchester. It’s affiliated with the wider Information Management Group.
The eScience Lab team are focused on the research and development of products and practices designed for data driven and computational research. The eScience tools and techniques support the coming together of people, data and methods, the sharing of the research objects of science and the automation of analysis and data pipelines using computational workflows.
Our work can be called “Translational Computer Science” as we innovate solutions using state of the art knowledge approaches but also produce and run production services and resources for Digital Research Infrastructures, particularly those in the Biomedical Sciences and Biodiversity. Our tools and techniques have been adopted by a large number of projects and institutions across Europe and internationally, as well as national organisations.
Of particular focus in our work is to support practices and methodologies for researchers to follow the FAIR principles, not just for publishing research data with rich metadata, but for ensuring computational methods can also be shared in a fully described and reproducible manner.
The research by the eScience Lab spans a wide array of topics, including FAIR and Open Research, computational workflows, scholarly communication, reproducible science, linked data, provenance, knowledge representation and community building. Lab members are leaders in international standards setting and community groups working on digital research infrastructure for science.
The eScience Lab currently has guaranteed funding until 2028.
In 2001, the myGrid consortium was formed, bringing together collaborators at the Universities of Manchester, Southampton, Newcastle, Nottingham and Sheffield, The European Molecular Biology Laboratory-European Bioinformatics Institute (EMBL-EBI) in Cambridge, and industrial partners GlaxoSmithKline, Merck KGaA, AstraZeneca, Sun Microsystems, IBM, GeneticXchange, Epistemics and Cerebra (formerly Network Inference). The UK Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) funded the first phase of the project with £3.5 million.
In phase 2, from 2006 to 2009, the consortium was funded for £2 million as part of the Open Middleware Infrastructure Institute (OMII-UK) funded by EPSRC (EP/D076617/1), in addition to an EPSRC platform grant (EP/C536444/1). The membership of the consortium was concentrated at the University of Manchester and EMBL-EBI.
In phase 3, from 2009 to 2014, the team was funded for £1.15 million by a grant from the UK Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EP/G026238/1). The membership of the consortium for Phase 3 was the University of Manchester and the University of Southampton.
The myGrid team continued as a sub-group of the Information Management Group at the School of Computer Science, participating in multiple projects. In 2015 the team formed the eScience Lab as a research group at the school. The group remains associated with the Information Management Group.