Putting the R into PlatfoRms


This paper looks at the question of how and why to bring about greater reusability of Research Platforms (variously called Virtual Laboratories, Virtual Research Environments, or Science Gateways). It begins with some context for the Australian Research Data Commons, where the authors are based. It then examines the infrastructure concerns that are driving the need for platforms to be created and remain sustainable, and the connection from this to reusability. The paper then proceeds to discuss the ways in which FAIR is being extended to a range of research objects and infrastructure elements, before reviewing the work of the FAIR4VREs WG. The core of the paper is an examination, with examples or case studies, of four different paradigms for platform reusability: accessing, adopting, adapting, and abstracting. The paper concludes by examining actions undertaken by the ARDC to increase the likelihood of reusability.


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