By Simon Hettrick.
Our policy team has been looking into research computing. This is specialist support for researchers who use software as a fundamental part of their research (leaders in this field are groups like the UCL Research Computing team, the EPCC and the Oxford eResearch Centre.). The theory we would like to test is that the greater the status of research computing at an organisation, the better the software produced by that organisation.
Our research into the composition of universities led us to the Higher Education Information Database for Institutions (better known by its acronym heidi). which is a web-based information system that allows users in higher education institutions to access, extract and manipulate data about higher education. If you are interested in this data, and your organisation has subscribed to heidi, then you may well be able to request a free login.
Just to show the kind of data that's available, Alexander Hay put together this graph showing what students are studying at Russell Group universities.