The Open Research Prize

In support of The University of Sheffield’s new Open Research Statement, the University Library is running an Open Research Prize to promote good open research practices.
The prize will reward and recognise those researchers who practice research in whatever way is appropriate in their disciplinary field. This prize will be open to all research students and staff at the university and those in research-related roles. The prize will be judged by a panel chaired by Professor Sue Hartley, Vice President for Research. A first prize of £500 will be awarded as well as runner up prizes of £200. Prize winners will also be asked to contribute a short case study for the University’s Open Research webpages and to speak about their work at a future Open Research Conversation event.

Open Research, making the processes and outputs of research transparent and freely accessible whenever possible, is crucial to ensuring the integrity and reliability of research. It also supports impact activities and allows the wider public to benefit from the university’s research. Applicants are asked to demonstrate their engagement in open research in one or more of the following activities:

  • Publishing research outputs (including data, software, protocols, exhibitions etc) using open licences to promote broad dissemination;
  • New peer review models such as posting preprints, publishing in a journal which uses open peer review, or formally pre-registering a study design;
  • Reusing existing open research outputs and repurposing these using open methods;
  • Teaching open research practices or advocating for open research in the community;
  • Using open and participatory methods including open notebooks and ‘citizen science’.


Applicants are asked to write a short (750 words max) case study describing how they have engaged with open research, the challenges they have faced and the impact of their work. Judges will be looking for researchers to have engaged thoughtfully with open research and where appropriate met the FAIR principles and included persistent identifiers (e.g. DOIs) to any resources mentioned.

We encourage projects which

  • Showcase an open research practice or practices (note, projects which focus on a single element are encouraged)
  • Could be used an templates or examples for other researches (note, projects do not have to be relevant to researchers in all disciplines to be eligible)
  • Engage with open research standards such as DOIs, FAIR data principles, CReDIT contributor roles
  • Are of a size/ambition relevant for the career stage of the researcher

To enter the Open Research Prize please complete this application form including your case study and ORCID. The deadline for applications is 5pm on Wednesday 23rd June, the winners will be announced in early July. If you have any questions please email

The judging panel will consist of:

  • Prof Sue Hartley, Vice President for Research (Chair)
  • Prof Stephen Pinfield, Information School
  • Prof Renee Timmers, Music
  • Dr Tom Stafford, Psychology
  • Dr Paul Richmond, Computer Science
  • Rosie Higman, University Library

Example Case Studies

Open research varies significantly across the disciplines so the example case studies below are intended to provide inspiration and not to be an exhaustive list. The types of open research practices you could describe in your application include:

  • A study you have pre-registered and then published which may have had negative or non-significant results
  • Software you have developed, released under an open licence and which has been re-used by others
  • An open monograph you have published, including a description of any challenges you may have faced
  • A dataset you have shared publicly with extensive metadata to support others re-using it, demonstrating engagement with the FAIR principles
  • A protocol you have developed and shared publicly to enable others to re-use it
  • Engagement or teaching activities you have run within your disciplinary community to promote open research to others