Web Science Institute Launches June 12th

A new Web Science Institute (WSI) combining the resources of the university of Southampton Web Science  doctoral training centre, the SoFWired collaboration with the Frauenhofer Institute and the Web Science Trust (WST).

The Web is the largest information system ever constructed and a social and technical phenomenon that has transformed the world and continues to do so in innovative and unexpected ways that will shape our future. We can’t predict how the Web will change our society, but Southampton has taken a lead in developing new forms of economic, social, political, technological and cultural resources based on a deep understanding of the Web’s technologies and social construction.

The Web Science Institute (WSI) will act as a focal point, co-ordinating and putting into practice education, research and enterprise initiatives on web-related developments at the University of Southampton. Its aim is to secure a sustainable future for multi-disciplinary research across the University that has Web Science at its core by:

• focusing on interdisciplinary collaborations and partnerships;

• demonstrating clear ambition, adaptability and innovation;

• leveraging the visionary leadership and outstanding staff and student expertise across the University;

• providing a platform for significant investment by Government and external partners;

• showcasing unique and creative education programmes that set new standards internationally.

The Institute will be directed by a multi-disciplinary team drawn from across the University and led by Web Science pioneers Professor Dame Wendy Hall and Professor Sir Nigel Shadbolt.

Professor Dame Wendy Hall says: “There is a ‘perfect storm’ brewing which combines open data, open education and open research, so this is a very exciting time to be launching the Web Science Institute.”

Professor Sir Nigel Shadbolt says: “The open data movement is one example of how the web is evolving, empowering individuals and communities to achieve phenomenal ends. The Web Science Institute will help us to understand this evolution.”

The other WSI Directors are Professor Leslie Carr from the Web Science DTC; Dr Graeme Earl from Humanities; Professor Susan Halford from Social and Human Sciences; and Dr Lisa Harris from Business and Law.