Virtual Research Environments examines making Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) usable by researchers working to solve “grand challenge” problems in many disciplines from social science to particle physics. It is driven by research the authors have carried out to evaluate researchers’ requirements in using information services via web portals and in adapting collaborative learning tools to meet their more diverse needs, particularly in a multidisciplinary study.
This is the motivation for what the authors have helped develop into the UK Virtual Research Environments (VRE) programme. They illustrate generics with specific instances of studies carried out comparing portal technologies and evaluating usability. This work, and further development of collaboration and Webbased research tools has been carried out with international collaborators, in particular using the Sakai framework and other recent Java-language based portal programming frameworks and associated standards.
The book is divided into a number of chapters providing motivation, illustrations, comparisons of technology and tools, practical information about deployment and use and comments on issues and difficulties in ensuring uptake of e-Science and Grid technology by already practicing researchers.
Definition of Virtual Research Environments and e-Research with analogies to Virtual Learning Environments
Compilation about how e-Research is carried out with reference to work in UK and USA on portals and services for collaborative learning, shared information services and repositories and their application for multi-disciplinary research
Description of Science Gateways to distributed research resources (Grid computing, data and Web 2.0 style collaboration tools) and their relevance to the grand challenges facing research requiring large teams
Information professionals and other knowledge managers, librarians, and researchers
Table of Contents
List of figures and tables
About the author
What is e-research?
What is a VRE?
Portals and science gateways for e-research
A service-oriented architecture approach
2: Motivation and requirements
Research lifecycle: data, information and knowledge
Generic usage scenario and requirements
What functionality does an e-researcher need?
What components need to be integrated for e-research?
3: Creating and using research data
Characteristics of data
High-performance computing in e-research
Managing research data
4: Managing and using digital information
Information sources used by researchers
E-research and the wider information environment
5: Collaboration, trust and security
Virtual organisations and their implementation
Security in a VRE: authentication and authorisation
Consultant Physician, Queen Elizabeth Hospital, Birmingham, UK
A useful addition to the stock of many libraries in universities and other research institutions., Refer A valuable resource for e-research initiated and novices at present, and will document the state of e-research in 2008 for posterity., Library Management