Torsten Reimer

Head of Research Services, The British Library


I am interested in the ongoing digital transformation of research, scholarly communication and research information management. This includes many of the ubiquitous “open” keywords (-science, -data, -access, -source, -scholarship) as well as research data, digital libraries, data curation, digital tools, methods and infrastructure for research.


My research background is in the humanities, with a PhD in history and a particular interest in digital humanities and scholarly communication. More broadly, I have experience working with research, education, scholarly information and digital innovation, mostly in the public sector but also in industry. I am particularly interested in the infrastructure for learning and research.
As Head of Research Services at the British Library I am developing the Library's response to the on-going change in the way scholarly information is generated, used and communicated. Responsible for 'Everything Available', one of the Library's major business change programmes, I am leading the transformation of the Library's services and contemporary collections in support of research, onsite and online.
In the past I have worked for universities, such as the Imperial College London, the University of Munich and King’s College London, libraries such as the Bavarian State Library in Munich, a few private sector companies, and a digital infrastructure provider - Jisc.
At Jisc I have managed a portfolio of programmes and projects relating to digital research infrastructure. This included computational infrastructure, software tools (from virtual research environments (VRE) to usability) and methods like text mining and social media analysis. I was also involved in activities to develop better support infrastructure for academic software developers, including working with partners across Europe to get the role of the research technologist more widely recognised.
Through these activities I have learned to appreciate the role of software and developers in research. Software is not just a key part of the underlying infrastructure, it is integral for understanding research results. This was particularly valuable insight for my previous role at Imperial College London where I developed and implemented the university’s strategy in areas like Open Access and Research Data Management, including an infrastructure for preserving and sharing academic code.

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