Research on Research (RoR) is the study of research practice. Also referred as meta-research or science of science, RoR is aimed at generating evidence to drive development and improvement of research that ensure efficiencies, transparency and impact.
One of the greatest challenges in the research on research community is keeping track of ongoing projects and unearthing and collating existing evidence. It is difficult to find information on projects (e.g., pilots, research, evaluations or evidence synthesis) undertaken by funding organisations, higher education institutions, or independent researchers and research managers that aim to improve research practices, as they are as varied as changes to peer review, studies on decision-making of funding committees, or addressing bias in clinical trials. The poor visibility of this body of work results in both duplication of effort and raises challenges to track its impact. The Research on Research (RoR) Registry and hub was developed to try and address some of these issues. By making it easier to both find and announce (through registration) research and evaluation evidence, and highlighting new initiatives, we are contributing to the increased knowledge, use, and implementation of research on research evidence, avoiding duplication, and supporting collaboration.
Research on Research (RoR) registry and hub
The RoR registry and hub (https://ror-hub.org/) is a free online platform to record research on research activity and a space to network and learn about the work of others. It aims to support research and evaluation activity taking place in the global research community. The launch of the RoR registry and hub in 2021 marked an important milestone in the journey to improve the way in which information on research and evaluation activity is made publicly available.
The RoR registry and hub was developed by the School of Healthcare Enterprise and Innovation at the University of Southampton and the National Institute for Health and Care Research in the UK. The resource was created with an initial research grant from the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Southampton and supported by the NIHR Coordinating Centre based in Southampton. An advisory group of expert colleagues working in the research on research space at national and international organisations were consulted throughout development and continues to provide insight and support in the delivery of the registry’s ambition and dissemination activity.
Our community on the RoR registry and hub now includes over 170 people from all over the world and 50 contributions of research studies and projects have been added to the platform. We are actively working to increase the registration by encouraging the community and others to register their work (you can see the projects and studies in the registry here: https://ror-hub.org/registry/).
Main benefits of the RoR registry and hub
There are many benefits to registering research and evaluation activity on the RoR registry and hub, including avoiding duplication, supporting collaboration, and increasing evidence use and implementation. By sharing information about what has been done and what is planned, researchers, evaluators and other stakeholders can identify gaps in current evidence and build on the work of others. Collaboration can also be increased by sharing information about research and evaluation activity, as it can lead to new partnerships and help all stakeholders (e.g., researchers, evaluators, evidence users) connect with each other.
Avoiding duplication: There are many research and evaluation activities taking place globally, often with little coordination or knowledge of each other. The RoR registry and hub can help to avoid duplication of effort by providing a platform for researchers and evaluators to share information about their work.
Supporting collaboration: The RoR registry and hub can also support collaboration by facilitating the sharing of information and resources. By bringing together researchers and evaluators the RoR registry and hub can help to build capacity and expertise in the field of research on research.
Increasing evidence use and implementation: The RoR registry and hub can also contribute to evidence-based decision-making by creating a community of practice that shares ideas and evidence.
Our ambition for the registry is to be a source of information about research on research and evaluation activity taking place around the world. The hub will help ensure that registered research and evaluation activity is discoverable, accessible, and reusable.
Future of the registry
- Continue to support networking of the research on research community
- Promote the use of the database of registered studies
- Continue to collaborate with funders, journals (e.g., F1000Research, the Research on Research, Policy & Culture Gateway) and other relevant organisations and networks to link research on research platforms and increase visibility of resources available.
Visit our website for more information and to register your work: https://ror-hub.org/
This blog is a collaborative contribution by Alejandra Recio-Saucedo, Hazel Church, Beth Giddins, Katie Meadmore, Ksenia Crane, Kathryn Fackrell, Amanda Blatch-Jones, and the RoR registry and hub advisory group