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Research Quality & Infrastructure

The Digital Network of University Collections project explores the basis for a sustainable collection infrastructure within the four partner institutions and develops a recommendation for its sustainable development. A comprehensive digital infrastructure for approximately 90 collections aims to support their usability and visibility, as well as facilitate research. The project is led by Dr. Yong-Mi Rauch (Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin), Dr. Andreas Brandtner (Freie Universität Berlin), and Prof. Dr. Schnalke (Charité – Universitätsmedizin Berlin).

A Digital Research Space for the BUAA digital research space for the Berlin University AllianceThe Berlin University Alliance generates an immense scientific output in the form of publications and research data. So far, these diverse digital resources have been made available on the data repositories of the respective institutions, distributed across several data silos. The 'A Digital Research Space for the BUA' research project aims to develop an open-source platform for exploring and analyzing these digital resources, as well as improving their accessibility and discoverability.

Project partner

Humboldt-University of Berlin, RMZ, Project Leader: Dr. Jens Ambrasat, Project Staff: Dr. Denise Lüdtke.

The Berlin Science Survey (BSS) is a scientific trend study on the cultural change in the Berlin research landscape. For this purpose, the experiences and assessments of scientists in the Berlin research area are regularly surveyed in an online questionnaire. The pilot study took place in the winter semester 2021/22, and the next data collection wave is planned for the winter semester 2023/24.

The project has been extended and is now running as the Berlin Research Landscape / Berlin Science Survey from 05/2022 to 10/2026 (duration of the previous project: 05/2020-04/2022).

Freie Universität Berlin, Project Leader: Prof. Dr. Dr. h.c. Beatrice Gründler, Project Staff: Dr. Theodore S. Beers, Xenia Kudela, Collaboration Partner: Dr. Jonas Müller-Laackman, Office for Digital Research Services, State and University Library Hamburg Carl von Ossietzky, Free University of Berlin, Marwa M. Ahmed, Free University of Berlin, Duration: 01/2021-09/2023.

The project aims to expand and coordinate subject-specific infrastructures in the field of digital humanities and research data management for the group of research-intensive regional-studies and humanities disciplines within the BUA. These disciplines are characterized by a heterogeneity of digital "data" in non-Latin scripts (NLS), both due to their subject matter and international collaborations in research and teaching. The project supports the BUA initiative "Concept Development for Collaborative Research Data Management Service" and aims to contribute to the integration of data handling in non-Latin scripts into all planning for the establishment of subject-specific "data communities.

Co-Financing with Objective 5, Freie Universität Berlin, Co-Project Leader: Prof. Dr. Claudia Müller-Birn, Technische Universität Berlin, Co-Project Leader: Dr. Sonja Schimmler, Project Collaborator: Veronika Weiß, Duration: 01/2021-06/2024

The project aims to prepare, conduct, and follow up on co-creation workshops, where the requirements of different interest groups (stakeholders from research, library, administration) regarding data sharing and associated value considerations should be identified. In several workshops, requirements for identifying existing value conflicts and their reflection will be analyzed and reflected upon, and the requirements will be transformed into low-fidelity prototypes (mock-ups) and further developed collaboratively with the interest groups. The results will be passed on to the Technische Universität Berlin for implementation, thus contributing to the development of the high-fidelity prototype.

Concept Development for Collaborative Research Data Management Services

The project for developing concepts for collaborative services in research data management (short: BUA-FDM) started in 2021. Its goal is to jointly establish and strengthen sustainable research data management structures.

The objective of the 'Distributed Network for Publishing Services' project (BUA DNPS) is to cooperatively build consulting and service facilities for academic publishing and expand interconnected open-access publishing infrastructures based on distributed areas of expertise. This project is funded by the Berlin University Alliance (BUA) and is a collaboration between the Medical Library of Charité – Universitätsmedizin Berlin and the University Libraries of Freie Universität Berlin, Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, and Technische Universität Berlin.

The 'Lab-Know-How' project is located at Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin and Charité – Universitätsmedizin Berlin. Its goal is to make individual laboratories more accessible to all (junior) researchers and students within the network. To achieve this, individual laboratories will be cataloged, the existing equipment will be cataloged in a database, and laboratories will be supported as shared resources in their management. Protocols for laboratory access, use, and data protection with an expanded user base will be published. Infrastructure will be established to effectively share and exchange the know-how of researchers already established in these areas, including the use of methods and equipment, data analysis, and interpretation.

Project Leadership:

Prof. Dr. Fabian KlostermannCharité – Universitätsmedizin Berlin Email: fabian.klostermann@charite.de

Prof. Dr. Pia KnoeferleInstitute for German Language and Linguistics Faculty of Language and Literature - Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin Email: pia.knoeferle@hu-berlin.de

The innovation group "Matters of Research Assessment and its Implementation" (MAI), led by Dr. Cornelia Schendzielorz (HU, RMZ) and Dr. Miriam Kip (QUEST), was launched on February 1st. It encompasses two distinct projects. While the focus of the project at RMZ (MAI-A) is on research evaluation in research alliances, making a contribution to the functioning, goal-oriented, and sustainable management of the BUA, the project based at QUEST (MAI-I) focuses on the application-oriented optimization of research assessment in the context of appointments and tenure track evaluations at individual BUA institutions.

Freie Universität Berlin Berlin, Project Leadership: Dr. Simona Olivieri, Duration: 10/2021-11/2023.

The project addresses the needs expressed by the ombudspersons in a previous project to support their work and develop a concept that goes beyond mere training programs. It promotes professional exchange and networking among ombudspersons by establishing a communication and exchange platform, in addition to organizing training workshops (e.g., case training, use of digital tools, mediation). Regular interaction with the institutions of the partner organizations within the Berlin University Alliance is sought to identify potential for joint processes, procedures, and infrastructures. The OBUA – Ombuds Office at BUA project is conducted as part of meta-research to further advance research on ombudsman methods, evaluation, and sustainability.

Open IRIS introduces a central and transparent platform for research infrastructures within the BUA. Open IRIS allows for the display of publicly funded large equipment and research services provided by all BUA partners. At the same time, the alliance consolidates resources to optimize the efficiency and utilization of large equipment and core facilities. The project is led by Dr. Claudia Flügel (Charité – Universitätsmedizin Berlin).

Open Make: Towards Open and FAIR Hardware

Prof. Dr.-Ing. Roland Jochem, Technical University of Berlin, Prof. Matthew Larkum, Humboldt-University of Berlin, Prof. Dr. Tim Landgraf, Free University of Berlin

During the COVID-19 pandemic, the significance of open hardware became evident as 3D-printed face shields for medical professionals could fill a crucial production gap. The concept of open hardware applies the principles of freely usable, open-source software to products, allowing for their replication and quality control. With an interdisciplinary approach, the project is developing new methods, guidelines, and standards to examine and publish open hardware in an academic context.

BUA Open Science Dashboards – Development of Indicators and Screening Tools for Prototypical Implementation

Dr. Evgeny Bobrov, Charité – Universitätsmedizin Berlin/QUEST Center, Maxi Kindling, Open Access Office Berlin, Free University of Berlin

As open science practices become more prevalent, systematic monitoring becomes increasingly important. However, established indicators serving as criteria for such monitoring are currently lacking. The project builds on Charité's expertise in the biomedical open science field and develops indicators for selected other disciplines as well as tools for the (semi-)automated collection of data. These indicators are developed in collaboration with scientific communities in pilot projects and will later be made available as dashboard prototypes. Simultaneously, the existing internal Charité dashboard will be expanded to include indicators related to the reusability of research data (FAIR data).

Open Urban Climate Observatory Berlin for Environmental Research and Applications

Dr. Fred Meier, Technical University of Berlin, Dr. Marco Otto, Technical University of Berlin, Prof. Dr. Henning Rust, Free University of Berlin.

Berlin is now one of the most densely populated cities in the EU. With urban growth, negative climate effects that affect the health of the city's population are increasing and exacerbated by the climate crisis. To better capture spatially differentiated urban climatic variables (such as air temperature and heavy rain), the project implements weather observations using the Citizen Science concept into an existing scientific measurement network, the Urban Climate Observatory Berlin (UCO Berlin). The measurement stations used for this purpose (MESSI) have been specifically developed and tested at the Free University of Berlin in cooperation with the Technical University of Berlin for use in Citizen Science projects. The 100 MESSI stations will be set up and maintained by city residents, especially gardeners. The data collected will be jointly evaluated and published using a co-creation approach to address specific scientific questions. The collected atmospheric data will subsequently be freely available through the open UCO Berlin.

PANNE – Publication Bias Analysis of Non-publication and Non-reception of Results in a Disciplinary Comparison

Dr. Helen Niemeyer, Free University of Berlin, Dr. Felicitas Heßelmann, Humboldt-University of Berlin

The publication of complete, high-quality research results is crucial in the process of scientific knowledge production. However, the science system sometimes provides incentives for publications that are not based on research quality but yield significant results or align with current trends. This research project examines the relationship between research quality, publishability, reception

The Shared Services Catalogue, a two-year pilot project, records all services relevant to researchers at the participating institutions.

VIVO: Recording, Searching, and Visualizing Scientific ActivitiesThe VIVO project aims to establish a platform for researching, collecting, and presenting scientists and their research, as well as their activities within the BUA.

Seed Funding for Objective Sharing Resources

Raising external funding for expanding existing or establishing new research infrastructures in the humanities and social sciences. Sharing research infrastructure and making more efficient use of it is one of the goals of the Berlin University Alliance. Therefore, the Sharing Resources focus area provides seed funding for six projects supporting the expansion of existing or the establishment of new research infrastructures in the humanities and social sciences, increasing the potential for cross-institutional research. The projects will be funded with a total of €275,000 for one year.

Ensuring and enhancing research quality within the Integrated Research Space is a central goal of the Berlin University Alliance.