Advanced Research Computing


TechSocial Series - April 2024

'Open Source Brain and NeuroML: enabling standardised, open neuroscience', by Dr. Ankur Sinha from the UCL Neuro, Physiology & Pharmacology Department

Speaker Bio

Dr Sinha is a post-doctoral research fellow at the Department of Neuroscience, Physiology, & Pharmacology at UCL.

His work focusses on the development of standardised data driven biophysically detailed models of neural circuits to complement insights gained from experimental investigations.

As a long term Free/Open Source Software (FOSS) community volunteer, Ankur strongly believes in FOSS and Open Science. A substantial part of his current work entails the development of the Open Source Brain web-platform and the NeuroML standard and software ecosystem to promote FAIR and Open (neuro)science.


In recent years, Open (neuro)science has slowly become the norm with multiple stakeholders pushing to ensure that all data, code, and other research related artefacts are openly accessible by all. While this does ensure accessibility, it does not always ensure reproducibility/replicability/extensibility since data and code is still frequently shared in many different forms, formats, and is in many cases incomplete. Various communities, research and otherwise, have separately arrived at the use of interoperable standards as a solution to making artefacts Open and FAIR (Findable, Accessible, Interoperable, and Reusable).

The NeuroML and Open Source Brain (OSB) projects were initiated with the singular aim of promoting standardised open neuroscience. NeuroML is a standardised, simulator independent language with a large ecosystem of Free/Open Source Software (FOSS) that supports all stages of the computational neuroscience modelling pipeline. OSB is an accessible, scalable web-platform that focuses on bringing together experimental data and code to enable researchers to conveniently "close the loop" between the analysis of neuroscience data and its use in theoretical/computational neuroscience.

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