ERSA Workshop on open Workflows

This is the workshop website for ERSA-WooW: the ERSA Workshop on open Workflows to be held in Vienna on August 23th, 2016.


Did you ever:

But did not know how to start with this, then this workshop might be of interest to you.

Aim of the workshop

To get regional scientists familiar with Markdown, the versioning system Git and using open repositories, in particular GitHub.

From a wider perspective, these type of tools serve brilliantly to make your research as reproducable as possible, because (i) Markdown can be read by anyone because it is just plain text, (ii) Git allows you to go back in time for your research so that you can always trace back what the past you have done and (iii) Github provides easy access for others to see what both you and the past you have done.


It focuses on using a very simple markup language (Markdown) and its interaction with one of the major open repositories GitHub. Typically, Markdown is used for blogging but can as well be used for writing papers, as the Markdown syntax can very easily be transformed in HTML or LaTeX files (or to the open office format if needed). To do so, we use the RStudio application, which is probably one of the applications easiest to use out of the box and where the conversion between formats is done automatically under the hood. Note that this workshop does not deal with using R or literate programming (weaving text and code with, e.g., R’s Knitr package).

Moreover, we will deal with the versioning system Git in combination with the GitHub open repository platform. We do not aim to give all details of Git or using Git from the command line, instead we will use a desktop application with a graphical user interface with serves best as a first gentle introduction of both Git and Github.


This workshop includes a hands-on overview of specific tools that have been designed with open science and reproducibility principles in mind. This is delivered alternating presentation time with demo time, allowing participants to get a real taste of what using the tools implies and see live their advantages.

In more detail, the workshop is structured as follows:

  1. Introduction to reproducibility and open science workflow principles (30 mins.)
  2. Markdown language (45 mins.)
  3. Principles behind Git and workflow examples (60 mins.)
  4. Publication of your materials on the open repository GitHub (45. mins).


Target group

Scientists in the social sciences (e.g., economics, geography, planning)

Previous knowledge

No previous knowledge required


Tuesday, August 23, 2016 : 13:00 - 16:00


Vienna room TC.3.02