Sunday, June 8, 2008

Institutional Repositories: The way forward for research?

At the recent SAOUG Conference (3-5 June 2008) a number of presenters talked about the Open Source Institutional Repositories. World-wide the paradigm is to make research collections available online and to improve the access to information, which is of great value for research. Since the facilitation of access to information is a primary function of academic or research libraries, they can take the initiative to implement a digital research repository in order to manage, organise, preserve, distribute and offer access to research conducted by the members of the institution.
If an institution supports open access, wants to increase the usage and visibility of research conducted at that institution and want to preserve all research output digitally, an institutional repository (IR) is the answer.
In SA there are currently 12 repositories (see below). How to get started with creating IR?
- Analise the need of your organization (survey-questionnaire; presentations to researchers)
- Compile a plan & proposal
- Evaluate various IR software
(DSpace, etc.)
- Develop, Design & Install your repository (management approval)
- Test your repository
- Market and promote your repository
- Develop policies and procedures
(preservation, copyright, etc.)
- Sell the idea to the academics ( demonstrations; how easy is to submit material to repository)
- Provide training
- Register your repository
- Communicate, collaborate & share with others; start populating; make it more visible.

Have a look at the UJ Librarians News blog for more on the SAOUG:
Institutional Repository Workshop - University of Pretoria, 1 - 3 October 2008, University of Pretoria
* University of Johannesburg
- UJ Electronic Thesis and Dissertations Database:
- UJ Institutional Repositories:
* Worldwide

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