Calls for project proposals roadmap

Last update June 2007

The roadmap outlines the calls for project proposals that are planned for release in July 2007. The roadmap is subject to change and the approval of JISC sub-committees. It will be updated to reflect the Capital programme's planning. ' Approximate funding available' is the overall amount of funding budgeted for the call and doesn't indicate the funding limit per project.

July Circular 2007 (Version 4)

Circular 02/07 released 27 July 2007. Proposals to be submitted by 02 October 2007

Programme Call


Approximate funding available
Users and Innovation Users and Innovation Next Generation phase 2 15-month projects to develop and adapt next generation technologies and practices, and pilot them with real users, in real institutional contexts (following phase 2 of the U&I Development Model). 10 small-scale projects (maximum funding of £50,000 per project) and 10 large-scale institutional demonstrators (funding of between £150,000 and £200,000 per project). £2,400,000
Enterprise Architecture

Enterprise Architecture Group Pilot

Call for a number of projects to investigate a service oriented approach to enterprise architecture development at institutional level utilising The Open Group Architecture Framework (TOGAF). Prospective projects will be required to produce evidence of current commitment and planned activities, at institutional-level, of relevance to Enterprise Architecture development utilising a service oriented approach.

The funding will be made available to secure at least 0.5 FTE commitment from a Senior Information Technology post who is able to demonstrate the skill-set required to participate in this investigation and evaluation. It is envisaged that the projects will last one year. Expected deliverables include an in-depth case study encapsulating all the outputs developed during the process and input into an evaluation of the implementation of the TOGAF methodology. Actual technical developments and implementations are NOT expected under this call.

c. £800,000


Federated Tools and Services

£400,000 for 1-3 projects (approx. 12 month duration) to explore the area of new technologies for access control to research data. c. £1,000,000

April Circular 2007 (Version 6)

Calls now closed

Programme Call Description Approximate funding available
Repositories & Preservation Repositories start up and enhancement projects (Phase Two) Projects to establish repositories in English and Welsh HEIs, for start-up and enhancement projects by institutions and consortiums. Up to £1,200,000 available in total. No more that 50 per cent of project funding will be allocated to both start-up and enhancement projects. Also sought are up to three six month rapid innovation projects. £1,200,000
Repositories & Preservation Repository interoperability demonstrators Projects in repository interoperabilty supporting learning and research scenarios. £300,000
Repositories & Preservation Digital Preservation A project to explore and develop digital preservation across the lifecycle will be sought. £150,000
e-Learning Cross-institutional use of e-learning to support lifelong learners Regional and collaborative projects to pilot the use of e-learning to support lifelong learning, including the support of progression and workplace learning, and the provision of flexible delivery and personalised learning experiences. £1,200,000
Cross Programmes Institutional exemplars Projects to develop exemplar technology and practice solutions t o large-scale institutional problems in the areas of administration for teaching and learning and for digital repositories. £1,400,000


Semantic services for research Use of semantic technologies to improve the research process. £1,000,000


Text mining Community call for a small number of projects within the area of summarisation to support the existing work being carried out on a summarisation service by NaCTeM. £350,000

September Circular 2006 (Version 4)

Calls now closed  

Circular 04/06 released 29 September 2006. Proposals submitted by 23 November 2006.

Programme Call Description Approximate funding available

HE in FE

Projects to implement and pilot e-learning technologies within one or more HE courses delivered in one or more FE colleges. The aim of these projects will be to enhance the experience of HE in FE learners through implementing with students an e-learning technology in the areas of a personalised learning experience, e-portfolios and personal development planning, e-assessment and the administration of teaching and learning.

e-Learning Assessment Technical development projects to produce and test open source item bank, question authoring and assessment sequencing software, implementing the QTI 2.1 specification. £200,000
e-Learning Technology supported learning environments Demonstrators of personal learning environments that investigate the integration of user-owned technologies with institutional educational systems. £400,000
e-Learning Administration of learning and teaching

Admissions demonstrators: projects to investigate and provide a technical demonstration of the systems and processes needed to improve HE admissions processes in four main areas: structured personal profiles, course entry profiles and pre-assessment; improving applicant feedback; accreditation of prior experiential learning; and e-portfolio based admissions.

Course description and discovery: mini-projects to implement and test the XCRI course information specification. This will be done by using web services to export course information from institutional systems, transform it into an XCRI-compliant format, and advertise it for consumption by an aggregator.

Course validation: a project to implement a system that supports the course validation process based on the COVARM  reference model

Domain maps: projects to produce domain maps (and pilot implementations )of the key administrative functions that support learning and teaching (e.g. accreditation and achievement, student fee management)



e-Research community engagement & support

Barriers to Take-Up of e-Infrastructure Services: The broader take up and effective use of the e-Infrastructure will depend on an understanding of the benefits to be gained and confidence in its use. As a means of achieving this, the proposed activity is a phased approach to identify barriers to take-up of a selection of 'e-infrastructure services' and to address these through research, user engagement, training and awareness-raising, and assessment. The work will be underpinned by a user requirements exercise focusing on ‘early adopters’ of these services and the resources (e.g. ‘e-science’ tools, datasets, documentation) that these services may provide. Through this process, a baseline will be established in order to address issues of take-up.  The effectiveness of the process will be assessed and fed into the project activity and to service delivery where applicable.

Support for Research: Tools & Standards: This strand of activity aims to extend ICT support of the research community in the provision of advice about and consolidation of existing and burgeoning technical standards and e-infrastructure tools (e.g. middleware, standard APIs, and web service protocols) that are in development and used by the research community. Resources made available as part of the activity will promote awareness of the range of standards and tools, and include the provision of unbiased recommendations for both open and adopted tools and standards. The work builds upon a range of core activity within the UK, as well as international developments. Additionally, the work is intended to inform and contribute to the JISC e-Framework for Education and Research.

Use Cases and Service Usage Models: The aim of this strand is to better understand how the research community of users actually engage with e-infrastructure tools and technologies to solve or address specific research problems or processes.  One of the ways of achieving this is to collect use cases and to engage in some form of evaluative and comparative work. For example, disciplinary comparisons of certain e-infrastructure component use, and evaluation of new use cases showing how these advance usability. The intended outcome is a more accurate overview of the current and new landscape of working methodologies and use and to progress toward a consensus on best practice and cross-working opportunities. The work will be undertaken in close collaboration with the JISC e-Framework initiative in the establishment of Service Usage Models (SUMS) and service expressions drawn from the use cases.



e-Infrastructure security

Federated Tools and Services:

  • Integration of Grid and Shibboleth  and vice versa:  Projects such as SHEBANGS , ESP-GRID , Grid-Shib  and Shib-Grid  have shown what can be achieved but further work is needed to widen the scope of what is known.  It is therefore expected that projects will take account of existing work and produce demonstrators.  All work should be in conjunction with the National Grid Service (NGS )
  • Developing and applying n-tier web service architectures:  As portals are developed further it will become increasingly important to resolve n-tier web services.  There is already existing work on this area, such as the SPIE  project, that should be used to inform work.  Bids within this sub-area will be expected to establish consensus nationally.
  • Applying existing virtual home for identity solutions:  There are now several solutions to virtual home for identities, such as ProtectNetwork , TypeKey  and OpenIdP , meaning that the remaining work to be done to implement them is within development of use cases for their application, tie in with levels of assurance on authorisation and selection of a service that could be used in conjunction with the UK Access Management Federation. 

Virtual Organisation Management Tools and Services: The arrival of SAML 2.0  and the potential new capabilities of Shibboleth within this area   mean that it is likely projects focusing on software outputs within this area will be split into two phases.  The first will be to consolidate and review existing national and international developments on VOs (such as myVocs , Grouper  and Signet  and related initiatives such as eduGAIN ) and take into account the potential of new developments and the second phase will be to produce demonstrators that take account of the new capabilities within SAML 2.0 and Shibboleth.   The primary focus of projects should be on grid-based virtual organisations.  Priority will be given to tools that move the agenda forwards and not simply new ways of carrying out the same tasks (creating lists of people etc) that do not interwork.



Knowledge organisation and semantic services

Sematically Co-ordinating Resources and Services Across Registries: The intention of the call is to build on existing activity within the UK and internationally to develop demonstrators for semantic models for automating research.  Bidders will need to choose one of the following areas with the option of choosing from a range of supporting threads, which are:

  • (A) Build upon the existing JISC e-Infrastructure and Information Environment, and demonstrate the integration of resources and services from existing JISC services, such as the IE Registry Services, data and information services (such as datasets at MIMAS, EDINA, e-Print archives, etc), e-infrastructure and grid services (e.g. National Grid Service ), and advisory services (e.g. Digital Curation Centre , OMII-UK).
  • (B) Look at data issues crossing the traditional library and e-Science domains to bridge the gap between metadata for services, data, and published literature, both with respect to content and with respect to security, custodianship, long-term preservation and rights of use. In particular, involve partnership of grid/e-Science technology experts with domain researchers and experts from the information environment and digital library communities.
Virtual Research Environments Phase 2: Pilot, further development and integration projects VRE2 will focus on pilots, with a wide range of users in authentic research settings within HE Institutions in the UK and partner organisations. This would include large- and small-scale pilots addressing real user needs. The applicability and fitness for purpose of emerging VRE solutions to a wider range of research settings need also to be established, and projects are encouraged to conduct pilots in settings other than the ones they have been developed for. Proposals to develop VRE solutions that support a complete research execution or research administration lifecycle are also encouraged. £1,600,000
Repositories & Preservation Tools and innovations call #2

Up to 8 projects that look at developing tools (software or model practices) that can enhance the use of repositories or digital information systems. These tools and technologies can be innovative and new. Areas are:

  • knowledge organization systems
  • semi-automatic indexing and classification
  • metadata generation
  • validation
  • usage metrics for impacts/trends
  • assessment of use requirements
  • linking, integration and re-use of diverse but related resources
  • tools to support added value services including learned society publishers
Repositories & Preservation Discovery to delivery #2

4 projects that develop solutions or demonstrate issues that will help offer improved discovery to delivery are sought in the following areas:

  • version identification framework
  • persistent identifier interoperability demonstrator
  • federated access management and repositories
  • semantic interoperability demonstrator
Repositories & Preservation Digital Preservation and Records Management

5 projects are sought:

  • 1 project for digital preservation assessment across the lifecycle
  • 2 projects on models and implementation of preservation services
  • 2 projects to develop preservation tools
Repositories & Preservation Shared infrastructure services for discovery, repositories and curation

4 projects are sought:

  • a pilot implementation of license registry is sought
  • a pilot national name authority and factual authority service
  • scoping of an architecture to support policy management ( rights)
  • scoping of a terminology registry
Repositories & Preservation Start up and enhancement funding for repositories #1

A number of projects are sought in two areas:

  • to establish repositories
  • enhance already established repositories

Institutional commitment is a requirement to receive this project funding.

Users and Innovation User and Innovation support projects Projects that will support the Programme team, community of practice and projects. £400,000
Users and Innovation Next Generation technologies and practice A community of practice (CoP) running throughout the duration of the programme, initially funded activities to identify user needs leading to a second phase when CoP members (only) are eligible to bid for larger scale development and implementation pilot projects £2,000,000
Users and Innovation Personal e-Administration to support teachers and researchers Implementations of technology and practice to support to support the personal e-administration needs of users. £1,000,000

April Circular 2006 (Version 3)

Call now closed

Circular 03/06 released 28 April 2006. Proposals submitted by 21 June 2007.

Programme Call Description Approximate funding available
e-Learning Regional and collaborative projects Regional and collaborative projects to pilot the use of e-learning to support lifelong learning, including the support of progression and workplace learning, and the provision of flexible delivery and personalised learning experiences. These projects will be carried out in two phases, to enable new developments from within the wider e-learning programme and other JISC programmes to be fed into the second phase. £2,800,000
Repositories & Preservation Repositories expert support group This service will provide advice and support to HE Institutions in England and Wales on establishing and developing repositories. 3 years. It aims to equip the HE sector with the skills to implement and maintain digital repositories. £1,200,000
Repositories & Preservation Federation and interoperability Projects to help to explore, define and develop solutions to federation of repositories. These might include application profile development, implementations and testbeds, cooperative consultation. All to be steps towards guidelines and tools required for a rich federation of repositories serving different data types. £300,000
Repositories & Preservation Tools and innovation Proposals for tools/test-beds to assist/explore use of repositories in all aspects of work (e.g. ingest, migration, preservation, visualisation, personalisation, folksomonies) £500,000


Identity management and levels of authority Easy to use user identity management is required to make it practical for users to transport their credentials between applications and end-systems. The solution may be a mechanism for transporting or managing a user’s public key certificates and associated private keys, or a system service that links user-friendly credentials, such as pass phrases, to the authentication infrastructure. Levels of Authorisation will further help ease of use by building on the work of the Core Middleware: Technology Development grid projects in this area to  move towards pilot / demonstrator services, in conjunction with TERENA. £650,000


Knowledge organisation systems and tools Proposals will be sought which encourage hybrid teams (e.g. eScientists, computer scientists, digital librarians) to examine and/or develop: (1) simplified tools for collaborative development of unambiguous semantic models describing services and content, particularly tools to bridge the gap between ‘human-oriented' and 'machine-oriented' metadata; and/or (2) Demonstrations of 'social computing' and 'personalised' computing including 'folksonomies' and web mining combined with state of the art semantic frameworks.  Timeframe: April 06-April 08 £400,000