Software, enterprise and skills

Simon Hettrick

12 January 2023 - Futureworlds, Southampton -  @sjh5000     ORCID: 0000-0002-6809-5195

We're not a traditional group...

Why care about software?

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Use software

Fundamental to results





Software represents a significant part of research innovation


There's a lot of exciting IP involved

There's a lot of


unexciting IP too


But there are problems...

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Lack of reliability, robustness and extensibility





Time to change the world


(the academic world)

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~10,000 RSEs worldwide

Image courtesy Ian Cosden

~40 RSE Groups across the UK

I learned a lot about how universities work

Academia supports cutting edge thinking


...and deeply  conservative institutional practices

+3 more!

Research software expertise on demand

  • We make code reliable, robust and extensible
  • Broad range of software and research skills
  • Pay for expertise only when you need it
  • Costed like any other position in the university
  • Fully supported by UKRI and other funders
  • 26 active projects and >90 completed
  • ...the more advance notice, the better

Training in software engineering

  • Providing the basic training in software and data engineering
  • For everyone from students to Professors, from researchers to professional services
  • Courses for beginners and intermediates
  • Training provided directly, via CDTs/DTPs and via CHEP (staffbook)

What we teach

  • Version control with Github
  • Automation with Bash
  • Introduction to Python and R
  • Introduction to software project management
  • Testing and continuous integration for reliable code
  • Integrated development environments, virtual environments and code conventions
  • Programming paradigms, management, architecture and design
  • Developing software in a team

Some of our work

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  • Southampton spin-out led by Phil Wu
  • Developed prototype for Carbon Action and Planning Tool which calculates ROI on ways of reducing carbon footprint and plans timeline for changes
  • React front end, .NET Core backend
  • Made the code scalable and robust


  • Shows relationships between clusters of gene expression in a patient in the form of a navigable 3D network graph
  • Produced the MVP based on the implementation of a novel algorithm
  • Developed the visualisation hosted in a scalable, Django web application


  • Southampton sprint out led by Josh Steer

  • Improves the design of prosthetics by predicting pressure on limb sockets
  • Productised code and developed web backend to scale presentation to consumers.

Radii devices

Thank you!


ORCID: 0000-0002-6809-5195, EPSRC Grant no: EP/S021779/1


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Software, enterprise and skills

By Simon Hettrick

Software, enterprise and skills

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