Complete the international RSE survey and help us understand the RSE community

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In partnership with the UK’s Software Sustainability Institute (SSI), we are pleased to invite you to participate in the 2021 Survey of International Research Software Engineers (RSE).

An RSE survey runs every two to three years across all the national RSE associations and the results are published as an open, anonymised dataset. The survey provides insight into the community and how best to support it, so it is of incredible value to RSEs, policymakers, and funders.

You can complete the 2021 RSE survey in English, French, German, or Spanish and it will take around 20 minutes to complete. The survey closes on January 142022.

Who can participate?

You don’t need to be called an RSE to complete the survey. It’s open to those who develop software for academic research as part of their work.

Results of the 2018 survey

You can view the results of the last survey in 2018 (which collected responses from 985 people from around the world), including a worldwide view of the data and breakdowns by country. Without the survey, we wouldn’t know that 19% of RSEs have a background in physics and astronomy, but almost 40% now work in biological sciences, that RSEs have 9 years of experience of software development on average, or that half of RSEs came into their current role from another position in a university (with 22% coming into the role from a job in industry). We also wouldn’t know important facts about the demographics of our community, such as the fact that 83% of RSEs identify as male. This information helps us understand whether our endeavours to improve the diversity of the community are succeeding.


We would like to thank everyone who helped construct the survey: Radovan Bast, Alex Botzki, Jeff Carver, Ian Cosden, Florencia D’Andrea, Abhishek Dasgupta, Alejandra Gonzalez-Beltran, Ulf Hamster, Scott Henwood, Simon Hettrick, Patric Holmvall, Stephan Janosch, Thibault Lestang, Nick May, Johan Philips, Nooriyah Poonawala-Lohani, Paul Richmond, Manodeep Sinha, Florian Thiery, Ben van Werkhoven, Claire Wyatt, Qian Zhang.


If you have any questions, please contact Simon Hettrick at sjh@​ecs.​soton.​ac.​uk.

Complete the survey