Pure Cloud Migration

by | Jun 12, 2024 | Uncategorised | 0 comments

Pure Migration 

On 7 May 2024 the Research Lifecycle Programme (RLP) launched the migration of Pure to Elsevier’s dedicated cloud platform. 

Pure is The University of Manchester’s Research Information Management System. It is used by academic and professional services colleagues to store and manage information about research activity across the University. Examples include publications, and funded research applications and awards. 

The platform underpins Research Explorer, the online platform where researchers can manage their online presence. Research Explorer is available to around 12,000 staff and students at the University. 

The safety and security of Pure, and the essential information it contains, was a key driver of the migration to the cloud. 

Elsevier’s dedicated cloud instance is hosted by Amazon Web Services (AWS) and offers enhanced security through two-factor authentication. AWS also utilise the latest hardware in their data centres, reducing the risk of data loss through equipment failure and enhancing performance and speed of the system to end-users. 

The migration ensures that researchers and professional services colleagues will have access to the system and its huge benefits for years to come. 

Speaking about the investment Lita Denny, Head of Research Services, said, ‘The investment we’ve made to move our Research Information System (Pure) onto the cloud signals our long-term commitment to sharing Manchester’s world-class research on a scalable, resilient, future proof platform.  It’s great news for our research community.’ 


The migration of Pure was the culmination of more than six months of planning. 

Teams from across IT Services (including Research IT, cyber security, integrations, IdAM, networks and service design and transition) and Research Business Engagement, worked together in the design, implementation and execution of the move. In addition, there was support from the Information Governance Office, Contracts and Procurement to set-up a new contract for the Pure cloud-based solution, including the addition of the REF29 module.

Project Manager Gail Millin-Chalabi said, This has been a complex project that has needed to be delivered quickly and has been very much a team effort, including, collaboration with our long-established project partner Elsevier’. 

Coordinating such a large and complex move highlights the benefits of a flexible and responsive programme like RLP. Programme Manager Kamie Kitmitto said, ‘After two years of planning, getting this from project approval to completion in six months is an incredible achievement. Such moves are complex, rely on close cooperation and often take much longer. It’s a real testament to the planning and project management skills available in our team’.

 What’s next?  

The move to the cloud is only the first step in a series of planned improvements to Pure. The next upgrade will come in autumn 2024 when the platform’s integrations will be rewritten to  XML rather than relying on database syncs.  

Laura Turner from RBE advises, ‘these syncs support the following integrations of data into Pure [volumes shown in brackets] – staff and PGR students [79,880], users [13,498], internal organisations [1,681] and external organisations [73,288]. These data integrations form the basis of the information in Pure and are critical to the working of the system’. 

The change to XML will:  

  • Ensure our integrations are supported by Elsevier (from June 2026 database syncs will be retired). 
  • Enable the RBE team to obtain the full potential of enhanced functionality offered by the Pure system to improve services in the future.  

Future service improvements are likely to include: 

  • The redevelopment of staff integrations to ingest more granular information about staff post changes. 
  • Being able to ingest additional organisational data and identifiers (e.g. SIC codes, company identifiers) to appropriately identify funders and collaborators with which we undertake our research.  

Further Information 

If you would like to know more about Pure please visit: https://www.staffnet.manchester.ac.uk/pure/  

For support with Pure including your Research Explorer profile, please email: Pure@manchester.ac.uk  


Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *