The SafePod Network – applications now open for a SafePod

Friday 5 April 2019


The University of St Andrews has been awarded £1.5 million from the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) to create and manage a new SafePod Network (SPN).

The main objective of SPN is to improve public benefit research through the provision of micro safe settings (known as SafePods), which will support, strengthen and widen remote access to research datasets held by Data Centres across the UK.

Designed and developed at the University of St Andrews, a SafePod is designed to replicate a traditional safe setting and includes security features such as a door control access system, CCTV camera and secure storage areas for IT hardware and equipment.

No datasets are held within a SafePod. Instead a secure connection is provided from a SafePod to a Data Centre for a researcher to view and analyse their project datasets. A SafePod is compact in size for placement into organisations where space may be at a premium.

Darren Lightfoot, SPN Manager at the University of St Andrews, said: “The major benefit of a SafePod to a researcher is that they will be able to have local remote access to project datasets, without the need for long distance travel to a dedicated safe setting provided by a Data Centre.

“For a participating Data Centre, SPN provides a low-cost secure platform to widen access to their datasets across the UK for research purposes. As a SafePod design and policies are standardised, a single accreditation for use of a SafePod by a Data Centre is all that is required for them to accredit the full network of SafePods.”

The call is now open for eligible organisations to apply for a SafePod and to be part of the SafePod Network. Further details about the call and a brochure about SPN and SafePods is available from the ESRC website.

SafePod application
To request an application pack please email Darren Lightfoot, SPN Manager at [email protected] marking the subject line ‘Request for SafePod application pack’.  For further information and informal enquiries please telephone 01334 463901. The closing date for applications is Friday 7 June 2019.

Pictured: SafePod Model Classic

Issued by the University of St Andrews Communications Office.

Category University news

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