Making data work for everyone

The Jean Golding Institute is a flagship multidisciplinary research institute at the University of Bristol, supporting cutting-edge research in the field of applied data science.

Jean Golding Institute for data-intensive research
University of Bristol
Royal Fort House
Bristol BS8 1UH


What we do

Newly founded in 2016, our work focuses on three key areas of research across all six University faculties:

  • Data analytics and methods of data analysis
  • Data infrastructure
  • Applications of applied data science

We support research by promoting cross-disciplinary collaboration, bringing together teams to pursue funding opportunities, showcasing recent work, providing new learning opportunities and specialist advice on data science, organising events and assessing research strength across the University.



Ask JGI is a service for data science support provided by the Jean Golding Institute. It is available to all staff at the University of Bristol and provides advice, support and guidance on all data science queries, including for instance statistical, computing, data management, visualisation, and storage questions. Get in touch


About us

The Institute is named after Jean Golding OBE, Emeritus Professor of Paediatric and Perinatal Epidemiology and founder of the Avon Longitudinal Study of Parents and Children (ALSPAC, or Children of the Nineties). For over two decades this ground breaking study of over 14,000 pregnant women and their children has given world-leading insight into the environmental and genetic factors that affect human development – and shown the power of using data-intensive research to improve people’s lives.

The Jean Golding Institute is led by our Director, William Browne, Professor of Statistics in the Graduate School of Education, Faculty of Social Sciences and Law.

JGI Seed corn funding - Deadline 23rd March 2017


The primary aim of this scheme is to support activities that will foster interdisciplinary research in the area of data research. We would like to encourage collaborations between researchers working in data analytics and data infrastructure to join applied researchers and other project partners and engage in developing short pilot projects based on the principle that seed corn funding is an investment of a relatively small sum that will lead to bigger things. 

The funds could be used for any of the following:

These examples are indicative and plans for other activities that may be directed towards forming the basis of an interdisciplinary research proposal and meet the overall aims of the scheme will be considered. Applicants are encourage to describe how the work supported by seed corn funding will lead to an application for a larger research grant. 


Any research active staff member can apply for seed corn funding; early career researchers (PDRAs, Research Fellows, Lecturers) are encouraged to apply. Please note that students, including PhD students, are not eligible for seed corn funding. 



The deadline for applications to this call is 17:00 Thursday 23rd March 2017. This funding call will be launched on 14th February, please come and join us in the Garden room, Royal Fort House, from 13:00-15:00 to talk about your plans, or email to arrange a meeting ( or call at ext. 18219. 

Assessment criteria

Proposals will be assessed by a panel consisting of the JGI Director and members of the JGI Steering Group. The assessment criteria will be: research quality, clear contributions from diverse disciplines to the project and the proposal should include justification of the resources required. Applicants also should explain their plans to seek follow-on funding. 

Conditions of the funding

Application process: Complete the seed corn funding application (Office document, 44kB) and send it to Patty Holley, JGI Manager, (


Application deadline

17:00, Thursday 23rd March 2017

Award announcements

29th March 2017

Funds spent by

21st July 2017

Report deadline

31st July 2017


The PURE data challenge

Using data science to identify and analyse interdisciplinary research at Bristol

Competition launch – 27 March 2017 15:00-16:00,

Stephenson room, Richmond Building (Students Union)

Deadline – 19 May 2017

The winning team will received £1,000

Competition details

The University Research Institutes (URIs) have a role in the university research strategy to promote and encourage cross-disciplinary research. The methods that we use (and explore) for doing this often involve running events such as interdisciplinary seminars/meetings, sandpits, seed-corn funds for grants in interdisciplinary areas etc.

Here one might consider what other resources we have at our fingertips to identify cross-disciplinary opportunities. We could of course use some data to this end and one obvious source might be the PURE (PUblications and REsearch) database that is self-generated by UoB.

The question is what would we use it for?

We would like to invite teams at the University of Bristol to analyse this dataset (information about the data below) and to try to solve the following challenges:

The above questions are only for guidance, the Jean Golding Institute would like to encourage teams to explore the dataset and develop analysis and/or visualisation tools that will provide a constructive view of inter-disciplinarity (current and potential) at the University.


The PURE team will provide a historical extract (up to the last REF submission) of the information in the PURE database to be used for the data challenge, which will come to you in a set of .csv tables. The information these tables contain includes data both on research outputs generated, as well as on the authors involved on these outputs.

Competition rules

Launch meeting

The competition will be launched with a meeting on the 27th March 2017 15:00-16:00, Stephenson Room, Richmond Building (Student Union). At this meeting the data will be introduced and members of the JGI will be available to answer any questions surrounding the competition. The meeting is also an opportunity to meet other contestants and form teams should you wish to do so.

The meeting is not a requirement for participating in the competition (but there will be coffee, tea, and cake!).


The entries will be judged by a panel convened by the Jean Golding Institute. 


The winner of the competition will receive £1,000, with two runners up each receiving £250.

The Jean Golding Institute will discuss with the winning team how to potentially continue supporting the development of their solutions. There may be an opportunity to distribute the developed work either on an open source or license basis for use outside of the University.


The winning teams will need to be available to showcase their entries on the 12th  September 2017 from 16:00. More information will be available near the time.


Competition opens:                     27 March 2017

Entries deadline:                         19 May 2017

Winning team announcement:      6 June 2017

Winners’ showcase:                     12 September 2017

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