Open Source Economics

A platform for reproducible research with modern tools

Our group focuses on three main problems: How do we organize a research workflow in a reproducible and efficient way? How can we utilize methods developed in one project across multiple projects? And, how can we implement research software in an extensible fashion?

Research projects have become more and more complex, rendering traditional workflows ineffective. Researchers have to learn about software engineering to enable collaboration in larger groups, re-use code across projects, and keep complexities manageable. We provide courses and online materials to teach basic software engineering to scientists. To make large projects reproducible, every step from data management to compilation of the final paper needs to be fully automated. To guide researchers in this area we develop Workflow Tools, that automatically take care of most of the labor.

Computational projects often require even more tools, for example, the use of efficient algorithms, implementations, and hardware. Researchers do not have to become experts in each of these areas to use modern tools like GPU computing, automatic differentiation, etc. We provide Methodological Tools for optimization, differentiation, and statistical inference that allow researchers to utilize modern computing techniques with an easy-to-use interface.

To see some examples where we combine a reproducible workflow with our methodological tools, see our Research Software. Examples range from life cycle models, epidemiological models, non-linear latent factor models to micro simulations.

Many of our tools and teaching materials are also useful for scientists from other disciplines. We partner with computer scientists and applied mathematicians to further improve our tools. We are open to contributions, collaborations and feature requests across disciplines.

Contact

               

Reach out on Zulip, follow us on Twitter and check out our GitHub.

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We gratefully acknowledge funding by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) and the Ministry of Culture and Science of the State of North Rhine-Westphalia (MKW) as part of the Excellence Strategy of the German federal and state governments, via TRA Modelling.