Oxford Research Finder


The aim of the Oxford Research Finder project is to build a search and discovery application to present research activity (publications, projects, interests) across the University. 

Through the Oxford Research Finder, research activity and researcher profiles will become much more visible. The project will deliver an internal (analysis) tool for a wide variety of stakeholders, researchers, research facilitators, divisional offices, OUI, and senior management. However, the aim is to make the Finder available externally making it easier for external stakeholder to engage with Oxford, contributing to the University’s knowledge exchange profile and the open agenda. 

The solution will use an open source web-based platform and scholarship ontology called VIVO and with Symplectic Elements as the sole data source. The Oxford Research Finder project is funded by the University’s IT Development Fund.


To everyone

Oxford Research Finder will be a tool to explore all research in Oxford that doesn’t require any prior knowledge about the University’s structure.

To researchers

When the Oxford Research Finder is launched your expertise will be more visible, assisting professional colleagues who are looking to match potential funders, collaborators, or policy-makers with researchers, thereby increasing research opportunities

The Oxford Research Finder will make it possible for you to more easily find other researchers from outside your department with whom to build collaborations, and for them to find you, or generally to get a sense of which researchers are working together in what area.

The Oxford Research Finder will map your existing collaborations and therefore make it easier to evidence research dissemination to funders.

You can use the Oxford Research Finder to explore new funders who have awarded grants for related projects.

To professional staff working in departments, divisional offices, central administration and Oxford University Innovation

The Oxford Research Finder will:

  • be a source of information when drafting sections on research and researchers in research proposals (including large bids) or bids for doctoral training awards 
  • help you identify potential collaborators when assisting researchers with their proposals 
  • be a source of information on networks of collaboration and areas of research, which can form the basis for analysis
  • provide leads to potential newsworthy stories and case studies for campaigns 
  • assist you in responding to requests for information on collaborations and areas of research and matching previous research collaboration with a particular group

Project status and timeline

The project is in development phase with testing and refinement taking place in Trinity term 2021. 

The Oxford Research Finder will go live internally. The first six months after go live will be used to promote the Oxford Research Finder amongst the different stakeholder communities, to encourage researchers to update their profiles and research activity information in Symplectic Elements, and to gather views and suggestions to make it a public-facing tool.




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