FAIR4RS Community Review June-July

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11 Jun 2021 UTC

FAIR4RS Community Review June-July

11 Jun 2021 to 11 Jul 2021

FAIR Principles for Research Software (FAIR4RS Principles) for community review

Dear RDA Community,

The RDA review process for the FAIR 4 Research Software (FAIR4RS) recommendation started on June 11 2021. All the RDA, ReSA and FORCE11 community members are invited to participate.

Please visit: https://www.rd-alliance.org/group/fair-research-software-fair4rs-wg/outcomes/fair-principles-research-software-fair4rs, and note that the review period is until July 11. The PDF of the document to be reviewed is at the above mention site, and comments on it should also be added on that site.


Research software is a fundamental and vital part of research worldwide, yet there remain significant challenges to software productivity, quality, reproducibility, and sustainability. Improving the practice of scholarship is a common goal of the open science, open source software and FAIR (Findable, Accessible, Interoperable and Reusable) communities, but improving the sharing of research software has not yet been a strong focus of the latter.

To improve the FAIRness of research software, the FAIR for Research Software (FAIR4RS) Working Group has sought to understand how to apply the FAIR Guiding Principles for scientific data management and stewardship to research software, bringing together existing and new community efforts. Many of the FAIR Guiding Principles can be directly applied to research software by treating software and data as similar digital research objects. However, specific characteristics of software — such as its executability, composite nature, and continuous evolution and versioning — make it necessary to revise and extend the principles.

This document presents the first version of the FAIR Principles for Research Software (FAIR4RS Principles). It is an outcome of the FAIR for Research Software Working Group (FAIR4RS WG).

The FAIR for Research Software Working Group is jointly convened as an RDA Working Group, FORCE11 Working Group, and Research Software Alliance (ReSA) Task Force.

The intended impact statement:

Adoption and implementation of the FAIR for research software principles will create significant benefits for many stakeholders, including increased research reproducibility for research organisations, better practices and more software usage for its developers, clarity for funders around their own policies and requirements for software investments, and guidelines for publishers on sharing requirements.

This work will be of value to software project owners, researchers, users of research data and software, the scientific community, research software engineers, software developers who publish their software, software catalogue maintainers, repository managers, software preservation and archival experts, policymakers who are responsible for defining digital policies, and organisations that create, modify, manage, share, protect, and preserve research software, funders of research, and others with an interest in the FAIR principles for research software.

Sent on behalf of the FAIR4RS Steering Committee