Location: School of Computer Science, University of Manchester, Manchester, UK

Dates: 1-day workshop on Wednesday 6 September 2017

Immediately preceding and co-located in Manchester with 2nd Conference of Research Software Engineers (RSE Conference) (7-8 September at Museum of Science and Industry, Manchester, UK)

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WSSSPE5.1 Report

Speed Blogs produced at WSSSPE5.1


You can now register for WSSSPE5.1. Please see the Registration page for details.

Call for submissions

The call for submissions is open until 17 July. Please see the Call for submissions page for details.



Progress in scientific research is dependent on the quality and accessibility of research software at all levels. It is critical to address many new challenges related to the development, deployment, maintenance, and sustainability of open-use research software: the software upon which specific research results rely. Open-use software means that the software is widely accessible (whether open source, shareware, or commercial). Research software means that the choice of software is essential to specific research results; using different software could produce different results.

In addition, it is essential that scientists, researchers, and students are able to learn and adopt a new set of software-related skills and methodologies. Established researchers are already acquiring some of these skills, and in particular, a specialized class of software developers is emerging in academic environments who are an integral and embedded part of successful research teams. WSSSPE provides a forum for discussion of these challenges, including both positions and experiences, and a forum for the community to assemble and act.

WSSSPE is an international community-driven organization that promotes sustainable research software by addressing challenges related to the full lifecycle of research software through shared learning and community action. WSSSPE5.1 is the seventh workshop convened since 2015 in an international series that provides opportunities for the community to come together to share experiences and advance practices.

WSSSPE5.1 aims to capture the state of the art in sustainable research software, discuss ongoing efforts to improve it, and identify potential topics to act upon. The workshop will report updates on and evaluations of present efforts from the community, including Working Groups established at past workshops, and suggest and discuss future measures. In order to provide short-term documentation, WSSSPE5.1 will produce a series of speed blogs in addition to the workshop report.

The workshop will include contributions and discussions in two tracks:

Track 1 – “The state of the art in sustainable research software” Track 1 is focused on reports on and evaluations of past and ongoing efforts to create foundations, ecologies and tools for sustainable research software. The idea of this track is to have a look at where we are, what has been done, and what the future of current measures can and should be.

Track 2 – “Towards a sustainable future for research software” Track 2’s goal is to identify new, and revitalise existing, implementable proposals for building a sustainable future for research software. The idea of this track is to explore and discuss possibilities for future measures and provide primers for their implementation.

Topics of interest include but are not limited to:

    Progress reports

  • Reports from research software sustainability projects (including WSSSPE Working Groups)


  • Developing best practices for developing sustainable software
  • Building regional WSSSPE communities
  • Refactoring/improving legacy scientific software
  • Metrics for the success of scientific software
  • Adaptation of mainstream software practices for scientific software


  • Career paths
  • Incentives in publishing, funding and promotion for better software


  • Training for developing sustainable software
  • Curriculum for software sustainability


  • Making the existing credit and citation ecosystem work better for software
  • Future credit and citation ecosystem
  • Software contributions as a part of application processes
  • Case studies of receiving credit for software contributions

    Software publishing

  • Journals and alternative venues for publishing software
  • Review processes for published software
  • Software discoverability/reuse

    Software reproducibility

  • Requirements in conferences and journals
  • Best practices

    Proposals and case studies

Important Dates

Important Dates