23:3 (2008:09) 23rd Conference (2008): Strategy Session: Institutional Repositories

August 25, 2008 at 5:09 pm | Posted in Strategy Sessions | Leave a comment


Institutional Repositories–Strategies for the Present and Future
Jean-Gabriel Bankier, Berkeley Electronic Press; Connie Foster, Western Kentucky University; Glen Wiley, Cornell University
Reported by Gene Gardner

An institutional repository brings to one place a body of scholarship of the university. Some institutional repositories respond to the high cost of publishing and some arise to accumulate the universities’ bodies of work.

The roles of an IR are to help reform scholarly communication by stimulating innovation and to serve as a tangible indicator of an institution’s quality, thus increasing its visibility, prestige and public value. Institutional repositories struggle because they fail to incent faculty who do not see them as a valuable offering and who think that IRs have a narrow content scope.

Some suggestions for beginning are to start with a task force to develop a statement of purpose and to consider the financial implication of a hosted IR or using a remote service like Top Scholar. The task force should also look into the legal regulations of the university to determine if there is any sort of conflict. The task force also needs to explore the university’s stimulus for creating an IR and methods of selecting content, and to evaluate sustainability.

Once an institution has gathered documents, the next decision is the content for the first release.  Theses are a good place to start.  There will be new roles for librarians both in collection management and content upload.  It is important to name and publicize an institutional repository.

Successful institutional repositories succeed when there is focus on incenting scholars to deposit their work, faculty are given one-on-one attention, and the scope is widened to include original content.


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