UK HE Facilities and Equipment Sharing Network

A UK HE Initiative, funded by the EPSRC, to support the creation and exchange of standards for the description of research facilities and equipment.

The UNIQUIP project was established to deliver a set of standards for cataloguing and publishing information about research facilities and equipment across academia. By making it easier to share data, the project aims to increase the visibility of and access to research equipment within and between institutions. This in turn will make it possible to realise efficiencies in the procurement of research equipment.

The foundations of the project

In 2011 the Research Councils produced a new set of national guidelines for equipment funding. This led to a number of EPSRC-funded projects to support their introduction across the sector. With several institutions simultaneously developing bespoke websites to address this need, a group of universities began talking to each other about how and where there needed to be a common approach and an agreed set of vocabulary.

The universities of Southampton, Leeds, Loughborough and Bath were particularly active in these initial conversations and together they formed the Uniquip project. The partnering of these universities provides access to, and representation in regional consortia comprising of 22 universities, creating a far reaching network for this project.